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Riddarholra's Church, Stockholm 







Copyright, 1916, by Mary W. Williams 

All Rights Reserved 


NOV 24 1916 

The Gorham Press, Boston, U. S. A. 

Made in the United States of America 





As every one knows, the mother land of the 
American nation is England. But what is the 
grandmother land? A short glance at England's 
past will show that it is Scandinavia. Though the 
English people are exceedingly composite, there 
exists in them a very important Scandinavian strain. 
The Northern blood was contributed primarily by 
two great immigrations directly from Scandinavia, 
and one from Normandy, by people only a century 
and a half removed from Scandinavia ; but it should 
be borne in mind also that the somewhat mysterious 
Jutes, Angles, and Saxons, whose continental home 
was in the peninsula of Jutland and about its base, 
must have borne a very close relationship to their 
contemporaries and neighbors to the north. 

With the introduction of Scandinavian blood came 
Scandinavian manners and customs which made an 
impress upon the English population only recently 

Of the various parts of Europe which contributed 
elements to the English people during their forma- 
tive period, Scandinavia is the only one whose popu- 
lation has remained relatively pure and in the orig- 
inal home, unjostled and unmixed by foreign inva- 
sions. Thus it happens that the English people are 
more closely related to those of Scandinavia, in 
blood and in manners and customs, than they are 


6 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

to the Inhabitants of any other European country. 
Hence, Scandinavia is the grandmother land of the 
American people. 

We know the English fairly well, but with the 
Scandinavians, who have more In common with us 
than any other Europeans except the English, our 
acquaintance Is of the slightest. Books In plenty, 
descriptive of present-day Scandinavia, are In exist- 
ence, but they somehow fail to present the Scan- 
dinavians as definite personalities. My aim In writ- 
ing this narrative has been to introduce to my fellow 
Americans In as Intimate manner as possible their 
Scandinavian kindred, who are still living in the 
ancient ancestral homestead — the Grandmother 
Land. In my efforts to establish a real acquaintance 
between the branch of the family which has wan- 
dered and that which has remained at home, I have 
purposely omitted the more conventional and more 
obvious part of my experiences in Scandinavia in 
order to give place and emphasis to the homely de- 
tails which help to bring out the characteristics of 
the Scandinavians and their home land, and to show 
them as they really are. 

In the preparation of this book I have received 
aid of various sorts from many people — so many 
that to list the names of all to whom I feel Indebted 
would be a most perplexing undertaking. Conse- 
quently, I make only this general acknowledgment 
of obligation. 

Mary Wllhelmlne Williams. 
2207 N. Charles Street, 

Baltimore, Maryland, 
May 28, 19 1 6. 



I. The Entrance Into Scandinavia; Co- 
penhagen II 

II. More About Copenhagen; the Copen- 



IV. An Introduction to Sweden : Lund, Hel- 

siNGBORG, Gothenburg .... 82 

V. Journeying Across Sweden; Stockholm 96 

VI. The Two Uppsalas;GefleandSoderhamn 120 

VII. Dalecarlia and the Dalecarlians . .144 

VIII. Trondhjem andMolde; the Norwegian 

Fiords 159 

IX. Bergen and Christiania . . . .183 
X. Copenhagen Once More; Castles in 

Denmark 202 



Index 237 



Riddarholm's Church, Stockholm 

Facing Page 

City Hall and Palace Hotel, Copenhagen .... 32 

Rosenborg Castle , 32 

"Denmark," by Elizabeth Jerichau-Baumann ... 40 

Grave Monument, by Rudolf Tegner 40 

Bornholm's Museum and Saint Morten's Street, Ronne 58 

Bridge Crossing the Old Moat at Hammershuus Castle 58 

Harvest Time in Bornholm 74 

Osterlars Church, Bornholm 74 

Ezias Tegner 92 

Statue of Gustav Adolf, Gothenburg 92 

Selma Lagerlof 112 

Interior of One of the Ancient Swedish Houses at 

"Skansen," Stockholm 112 

Statue of Birger Jarl, Stockholm 108 

Museum of the North, Stockholm 108 

Gamla Uppsala Church . 132 

Choir of Gamla Uppsala Church . . .' . . . . 132 

A Quaint House in Rattvik 156 

Rattvikers on Their Way to Church 156 

Gargoyle on Trondhjem Cathedral 172 

Romsdal Fiord, Showing Horn . 172 

A Norwegian "Maud Muller" 178 

Piling Codfish in Soholt 178 

Rosenkrantz Tower and Haakon's Hall, Bergen . . 186 

Norwegian Mountain Homes 186 

Above the Timber Line in Norway 192 

Statue of Hcnrik Ibsen by Sinding ...... 192 

Stork Fountain, Copenhagen 220 

Statue of Holger Danske at Marienlyst 220 

Roskilde Cathedral 234 

Hans Andersen's House 234 



the entrance into scandinavia; copenhagen 

Copenhagen, Denmark, 

July 20, 191 — 
Dear Cynthia : 

Here I am at last, all safe and sound, in the land 
of the Viking — the land of my ancestors. In fact, 
several days have passed since my wandering feet 
first touched Danish soil; but I have been so ab- 
sorbed with my initial explorations of this snug little 
country, which is still "home" to my mother, that 
I have been neglecting my own home and friends 
in the dear Far Western World. 

Last Friday morning I left Kiel for Korsor, 
which is upon Seeland, the largest island of Den- 
mark. A glorious, cloudless sky was overhead; 
and the Baltic about us was a vast, shimmering, rip- 
pling liquid plain of changing blues and greens over 
which our boat, the Prince Sigismiind, smoothly 
and rapidly passed. About two hours after leaving 
Germany I secured my first glimpse of Danish terri- 
tory; Langeland (Long Land), with low, white 


12 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

cliffs — modest imitations of Shakespeare's "pale and 
white-faced shore" — loomed up on the left. Our 
boat kept close enough to the island to give us a 
good view of the rolling coast, marked off in patches 
of light fields and dark forests, with here and there 
glimpses of quaint farm houses and windmills of 
the "Dutch" variety. To the right, faint and far 
away, was a misty suggestion of the cliffs of Laaland 
(Low Land), a larger .island of the Danish archi- 
pelago; but so like Langeland did its vague outline 
appear as to seem the very ghost or double of it. 

While we were still passing between these two 
southern outposts of Denmark, luncheon was an- 
nounced. Some of the passengers promptly went 
below to the dining salon, but many had their re- 
freshments served on little tables on the open deck. 
I was among the latter. Most of the people about 
me were evidently Germans going to Denmark or 
Danes or other Scandinavians returning home after 
visits of business or pleasure in Germany. To them 
it was a voyage frequently made, and they preferred 
the deck to the dining salon merely because it was 
pleasanter. But to me, an American of Scandinavian 
parentage, it was such a very important occasion 
that I was determined to see as much as possible, 
during this first view, of the land in which, for cen- 
turies — for thousands of years — my forefathers and 
foremothers had lived and died. 

The part of the Baltic which separates the island 
of Fiinen from the island of Seeland, upon which 
Copenhagen is situated, is called by the Danes "Store 
Baelt" — the Great Belt. As I have told you, for 
my crossing, the waters of the Great Belt rippled 
charmingly under the gentle stroke of the summer 

Entrance into Scandinavia; Copenhagen 13 

breeze; and the islands beckoned invitingly to the 
front and the left and the right. This seascape and 
landscape was as different as possible from the mental 
picture which the name Great Belt had long sum- 
moned to my mind. Since studying Scandinavian 
history I had most frequently thought of the strait 
as heavily bridged with ice, and of the Danish 
islands as paralyzed under the dominion of the Frost 
King. For this was the state of affairs one Feb- 
ruary day two hundred and fifty odd years ago. And 
the bridge of ice was so strong and so thick as to 
tempt Charles X of Sweden — who had been recently 
moved to make a belligerent call upon his nearest 
neighbor to the south — to march several thousand 
horse and foot soldiers over the bridge, via the 
smaller islands to the right hand, and to threaten 
the Danish capital. In consequence of the Swedish 
king's pressing attentions, Frederick III of Denmark, 
who had been to a considerable extent to blame for 
the quarrel, decided to buy peace by means of the 
treaty of Roskilde. This gave to the Swedes a half 
dozen Danish provinces, including some in the south- 
ern part of the present Sweden, which had long 
been Danish soil. 

It soon became evident, however, that Charles in- 
tended to make use of the army which he maintained 
in Denmark for the purpose of wringing still fur- 
ther concessions from his humiliated neighbor. 
Naturally, Denmark did not agree to the new de- 
mands with the desired alacrity, and King Frederick 
declared that he would die like a bird in its nest 
rather than surrender to Charles. Whereupon the 
Swedish king vowed that he would wipe the Danish ' 
nest off the map, and soon had laid siege to Co- 

14 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

penhagen. But the Danish people worked as one 
man and helped save their capital by hurling upon 
the enemy an avalanche of artillery fire, stones, and 
hot water. Much aid was also given to the Danes 
by the Dutch fleet, which slipped past the Swedish 
guns guarding the Sound to the north and arrived 
in time. Soon the tables were turned. The Swedes 
were defeated and driven out of the land, and in the 
end Denmark recovered some of the territory which 
she had lost. And little Denmark still stands, some- 
what pared away, to be sure, in the course of the 
centuries by one enemy or another, but with the 
great heart of her — the most Danish part — still in- 
tact and still beating, an independent nation of busy, 
healthy, happy people. 

While I was still meditating upon Charles X's 
crossing of the Great Belt and the exciting events 
which followed, the Prince Sigismund slipped swiftly 
into the harbor of Korsor, a place rimmed with 
low-built, cosy-looking houses. As soon as we 
landed, a giant in buttons and bars "shooed" us into 
the customs house. He was a giant of the harm- 
less, friendly sort, and as soon as the inspection of 
my baggage was over he hunted up a porter for me. 
The porter was a blond, guileless-appearing indi- 
vidual, possessed of astonishingly modest ideas of 
his own worth. He weighed my trunk and put it 
on the Copenhagen train, carried my two suit cases 
to an "ikke-roge" (smoking not allowed) compart- 
ment of the same train, and then announced the 
charge for his services to be ten ore — less than 
three cents ! 

The train which I boarded, like most passenger 
trains in Europe, was divided into compartments for 

Entrance into Scandinavia; Copenhagen 15 

accommodating about six people, each compartment 
opening into a narrow corridor running the whole 
length of the car. The compartment in which I 
rode was third class, but it was very clean and was 
quite satisfactory for a short journey. The seats 
were not upholstered, but they were more comfort- 
able than the average church pew. On the walls 
were several attractive photographic views of Dan- 
ish landscapes, and a map of Denmark. There was 
also the customary notice prohibiting spitting upon 
the floor. My only companions in the compartment 
were a rosy-cheeked Danish mother and two chubby, 
blue-eyed little boys. Each of the little chaps had a 
tiny shovel and a tin bucket, still bearing traces of 
sand. They had evidently spent the day at the 

As the train rolled placidly along, I had pleasant 
glimpses of Seeland through the car window. The 
otherwise monotonous level of the land was broken 
by the variety of color and form : there was a con- 
stant alternation of dark forests and light fields, of 
thatched-roof farm houses and huge windmills; and 
occasionally there appeared men and women culti- 
vating the crops. Now and then we passed through 
a town, and in one of them, Roskild'e, I obtained a 
view of the spires of the fine old cathedral towering 
above the tops of the trees clustering around it, and 
far above the broad red-tiled roofs of the houses in 
the foreground. I shall visit Roskilde upon my 

Soon we were at our destination. It took just two 
hours to pass from Korsor to Copenhagen — to cross 
Denmark's largest island; and the fare which I paid 
was the equivalent of eighty-five cents in American 

1 6 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

money — about one-third of what it would have been 
if I had come first class. To an American used to 
the long transcontinental journey in her own land, 
Denmark seems so very, very tiny. 

As you doubtless know, I have cousins in Copen- 
hagen, but I did not write to them of my intended 
visit because I wished to make my first acquaint- 
ance with Denmark's capital by independent ex- 
ploration; therefore, at the Central Station I took 
a drosky for a hotel. And at the hotel I secured a 
comfortable room, supplied with a generous portion 
of windows and furnished in blues and greens and 
browns blended according to Danish ideas of the 
artistic. My exploration of Copenhagen began with 
my bed-room. I wish that you could see my bed and 
my stove, Cynthia; they are marvels to American 
eyes. The bed is a veritable mountain of feathers; 
whole flocks of geese must have contributed their 
substance toward its construction. Not only are 
there several strata of feather pillows upon which 
to lie, but the coverlet is also of down, puffy and 
fluffy, and of smothering thickness. At night I cast 
most of the components of the bed in a heap upon 
the floor, cap off the pile with the coverlet, and sleep 
in peace under the top sheet and the steamer rug 
which I purchased in New York. It is not a bad 
plan to carry along one's blankets when one is trav- 

When, as a child, you read the story of the "Prin- 
cess and the Pea," didn't you feel that Andersen 
stretched the truth a little in his solemn assertion 
that the old queen put tzventy mattresses on top of 
the pea, and twenty eider-down beds on top of the 
mattresses? I certainly did; but I doubt no longer. 

Entrance into Scandinavia; Copenhagen 17 

Since, in these modern times, a hotel bed for plain 
folks contains the number and variety of mattresses 
and feather beds which mine does, I am willing to 
believe that in times past on an extraordinary occa- 
sion Denmark's queen used an unlimited quantity of 
downy layers in making up the royal "spare bed." 
Whether or not the true princess felt the pea through 
the forty-strata mountain is another question. 

The Danes call heating apparatuses like the one 
in my room a "kakkelovn," and they show discrim- 
ination and taste in doing so; no such simple word 
as "stove" could adequately indicate the dignity and 
majesty of the structure which fills the corner of my 
room from floor almost to lofty ceiling. The edi- 
fice bears a striking resemblance to the picture of 
the Tower of Babel which appeared in the "Child's 
Bible" of my juvenile days. Though its proportions 
are slimmer, its general style is the same ; a series 
of stories — each one slightly smaller than the one 
next below — mount ambitiously skyward. Far above 
my head is the summit, crowned with a shining 
nickel ornament, and near the base is a door open- 
ing into the fire-box. There is enough cast iron in 
the tower to make several fair-sized American heat- 

The days since my arrival have been so balmy 
that the giant stove has not been called upon for 
service; but I gladly warrant its efficiency, for it 
bears a strong family resemblance to a more modest- 
appearing structure called a "kachelofen," which 
kept my room in Germany comfortable last winter 
in the worst below-zero weather. These "kakkel" 
stoves are lined with brick and retain the heat re- 
markably well. They are a vast improvement upon 

1 8 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

the English open-grate fire which permits one to 
freeze on one side while he roasts on the other. 

On the very afternoon of my arrival, without 
even stopping to unpack my suit-case, I took a walk 
about Copenhagen. I just could not wait; all of the 
sights and sounds which came to me through my 
wide-open windows seemed to blend into one dis- 
tinct personality and to call to me to come forth and 
become acquainted. Copenhagen has decidedly the 
most distinct personality that I have ever sensed in 
any city. This interesting capital seems very old 
and very wise, but not too old and not too wise to 
sympathize with youth and unwisdom. It is like an 
ancient lady with silvery hair and strongly-lined 
face, who yet has warm red blood pulsing through 
her heart and a merry twinkle in her blue eyes; a 
very charming dame, Cynthia, and altogether lov- 
able. Once out upon the streets, moving along with 
the pedestrians, I felt quite at home. I was no 
longer a stranger in a strange land. 

Perhaps the fact that familiar words met my ears 
was the chief element in my sense of homelikeness. 
My ability to understand Danish and to speak it — 
after a fashion — contributed much toward placing 
me upon a friendly basis toward Copenhagen. But 
the Copenhageners' knowledge of English was also 
a tremendous help. An astonishing proportion of 
the population speak English. Most of the younger 
half have studied it in the schools; and some have 
become acquainted with the language through resi- 
dence in England or the United States. I promptly 
met one of the latter group. A short distance down 
the street I noticed some large red gooseberries of 
a variety which is edible raw. I have never seen 

Entrance into Scandinavia; Copenhagen 19 

them in the United States, but became fond of them 
in Germany; so I wanted some. As I could not re- 
member the Danish name for the fruit, I simply 
pointed to it and asked for ten ores' worth. While 
measuring out the berries, the salesman surprised 
me by asking, in good English, "What is the Eng- 
lish name for these?" I told him, and he evidently 
promptly catalogued me as an American experiment- 
ing with the King's Danish; for he proceeded to re- 
mark that he had seen berries of somewhat similar 
appearance in "the States," where he had spent a 
few years. I replied that it was pleasant to find 
people in the shops who could speak English. 
"Sure!" said he, whereupon I was quite convinced 
that he had been in "the States." 

Until the middle of the twelfth century the place 
which later became Denmark's capital was but a 
small fishing port. Facing, as it did, the Baltic, 
which was at the time infested by the piratical 
Wends, whose homes were on the southern shore, 
this portion of Seeland was very open to attack; 
and probably was also frequently a resort for sea- 
robbers. But a change came soon after the great 
warrior-priest. Axel — or Absalon, as he was later 
called — was made archbishop of Lund. This was 
in the stirring days of King Waldemar the Great, 
and the frontier bishop's office was far from a sine- 
cure; repeatedly, Absalon interrupted services at 
the altar in order to seize the sword and to pursue 
the enemies of his land and his religion. And even- 
tually the struggle ended by the conquest of the 
Wendish heathen and their conversion to Christian- 
ity. But before this, Copenhagen was founded. 
During his campaigns against the Wends, Absalon 

20 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

strongly fortified the obscure little fishing port. At 
first the stronghold bore the name Axelshuus, or 
Absalon's House, but as time passed the important 
commercial town which grew up around it came to 
be called "Kiobmaenshavn," which in Danish means 
"Merchants' Haven." Copenhagen is merely the 
EngHsh corruption of the modern Danish name, 

The name of Bishop Absalon, as you see, is one 
which is written large in Danish history; and, in the 
long centuries which have passed since his day, Co- 
penhagen has not forgotten his services. Close to 
the Island of the Castle, or Slotsholmen, on which 
once stood the fortress erected by him, is a conspic- 
uous equestrian statue of Absalon; and on guard 
over the entrance to the new town hall, or Raad- 
huset, is another sculptured figure of the great Dane 
who went forth with the cross in one hand and the 
sword in the other. 

But to my thinking, at least, Denmark's prehis- 
toric past is of more interest than her early Christian 
history. Consequently, I went, the day after my 
arrival, to the National Museum. This is in the 
heart of the old Copenhagen, just opposite Slots- 
holmen. The building which houses the national 
collection was first erected in the seventeenth cen- 
tury; and it was rebuilt in 1744, as a residence for a 
Danish prince, for which reason it is still called 
'Trinsens Palais." About sixty years ago it was 
converted into a museum ; and, though it is a homely 
old structure, the Prince's Palace is spacious and 
well lighted, and hence is well suited to its present 

On the walls of the courtyard are memorial tab- 

Entrance into Scandinavia; Copenhagen 21 

lets to Rasmus Nyerup and to Jens Jacob Asmussen 
Worsaae, the founder of Danish archaeology. To 
see these tablets was like coming across mementoes 
of old friends; for Nyerup and Worsaae have done' 
much toward making rough ways smooth and 
crooked paths straight for all who care to learn 
what the ancient Scandinavians were like. And 
within the vestibule of the building stands a marble 
bust of Christian Jiirgensen Thomsen, the man to 
whom Denmark is most indebted for bringing to- 
gether the collections exhibited in the museum. 

But it is neither Nyerup, Worsaae, nor Thomsen 
to whom belongs the final credit for Denmark's pre- 
eminence in things archaeological. That must go to 
the Danish people, whose unusual interest has been 
indispensable in making the national archaeological 
exhibit the most complete possessed by any nation, 
except Norway and Sweden. But there is no mys- 
tery connected with the Scandinavian zeal for things 
prehistoric; it has a sound historical basis, which is 
akin to family pride. No other peoples of Europe 
have so long held the soil now occupied by them as 
have the Scandinavians. In fact, the ancestors of 
the modern Scandinavians reached the northwest of 
Europe even before they were Scandinavians; it was 
only during the long centuries following their ar- 
rival that they acquired the physical and mental 
characteristics which distinguish them from other 
peoples of Teutonic stock. When my pre-Scandi- 
navian forefathers and foremothers came into the 
present Scandinavian lands, a thousand years or so 
before the birth of Christ, they were in the New 
Stone Age of culture. And while nations rose and 
fell in other parts of Europe — while Celt fell be- 

22 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

fore Roman, and Roman before Teuton, and Teu- 
ton before Saracen and Slav — the people who were 
becoming Scandinavians remained isolated in their 
northern land, frequently quarreHng among them- 
selves, it is true, but unjostled and uninvaded by 
alien blood. Consequently, to the modern Scandi- 
navians practically all archsological remains found 
in the land seem almost ancestral relics, and, nat- 
urally, they take a tremendous interest in them. 

The exhibits are arranged in the museum in chron- 
ological order, beginning with the Old Stone Age, 
and visitors are expected to follow Denmark's cul- 
tural development progressively. I know, because 
I unwittingly entered first one of the rooms contain- 
ing exhibits from the late Middle Ages, and the 
vigilant guard courteously but firmly showed me to 
the door on the opposite side of the vestibule. I 
was not to be permitted to get an inverted idea of 
Denmark's past, even if I wished to do so. 

The earliest part of the Old Stone Age in Den- 
mark is represented in the museum by a section of 
a kitchen midden, or shell mound.' The primeval 
settlers of Scandinavia did not live in the days of 
patent garbage cans and incinerators; hence, after 
a feast of raw or baked clams or oysters on the half 
shell, they dumped the shells upon the community 
refuse heap — and thus were saved dish-washing. 
When they feasted on mammals and birds, the 
bones were thrown upon the same garbage pile; but 
the middens are mostly made up of shells, for shell 
fish — especially oysters — were wonderfully abundant 
in the Baltic in the Old Stone days, and could be had 
for the digging. 

I was particularly interested in this bona fide, 

Entrance into Scandinavia; Copenhagen 23 

primitive Danish garbage heap because a few years 
ago I saw a midden of the same general character, 
left by the ancestors of the American Indians, when 
they were at the same stage of culture as the makers 
of the Danish shell mounds. Perhaps I have told 
you before of the midden which I saw in California. 
It was near Point Richmond, on the shores of San 
Francisco Bay; but as the land on which it stood has 
long been sinking, it had been partially carried away 
by the waves. On the other hand, since the coast of 
Denmark is rising, many of the Danish middens are 
now far inland. But the two kinds of prehistoric 
garbage heaps bore a striking resemblance to each 
other; both were made up largely of shells, inter- 
spersed here and there with bones. 

Until the middle of the last century, the world 
believed that the many heaps of shells, mixed with 
bones, found here and there on the coasts of Den- 
mark, were merely due to the in-wash of the sea 
waves. Professor Worsaae it was who discovered 
their true origin. In 1850 he proved them to be of 
human formation. Though this seems a very sim- 
ple discovery, it was a very important one in archae- 
ology, for it explained similar mounds in other parts 
of the world, and it led to a most careful investiga- 
tion of the Danish middens, resulting in the dis- 
closure of fragments of weapons and utensils which 
threw light upon a people whose one-time existence 
the Danish archsologists had hitherto not even sus- 

But though we are introduced familiarly to their 
garbage heaps and to a few of their personal be- 
longings, much uncertainty exists regarding the mid- 
den-builders of Denmark's Old Stone Age. We 

24 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

know, to be sure, that they probably lived in huts of 
boughs and skins, or in caves; that their food was 
fish and game, with perhaps roots and berries; that 
they could manufacture a very rough sort of pot- 
tery; that their weapons and implements were of the 
most crudely-worked stone. But of how these an- 
cients themselves appeared, whence they came, and 
whither they went, we know nothing. It seems 
pretty certain that they were a different people from 
the ancestors of the modern Scandinavians. Indeed, 
some scientists have suggested that the midden peo- 
ple were members of the yellow race, probably re- 
lated to the Eskimo, or to the Lapp. And in the ab- 
sence of proof this theory will do as well as any 

The people from whom the Scandinavians evolved 
came later, as I said before — in Denmark's New 
Stone Age. It would be more accurate, I presume, to 
say that they brought the New Stone Age with them ; 
for when they reached the Scandinavian cradle- 
land they already knew how to chip stone into accu- 
rately shaped implements and weapons, and how to 
put on a finishing polish when the proper shape had 
been obtained. However, these early immigrants 
learned much in their new home about working in 
stone, and in Scandinavia the New Stone period at- 
tained unusual perfection. This was because the 
isolation of the region delayed the introduction of a 
knowledge of work in metals. With all due respect 
to the Neolithic Danes, I feel bound to remark that, 
given a sufficiently long period of apprenticeship and 
a reduction of the number of distracting and dis- 
couraging elements, most people would be able to 
reach a high standard. 

Entrance into Scandinavia; Copenhagen 25 

Nevertheless, when one wanders through the ar- 
chaeological collection one becomes quickly convinced 
that these primitive Scandinavians were master work- 
men. On the shelves behind the glass doors are 
extensive exhibits of stone hammers and axes and 
other objects, in a great variety of graceful and 
beautiful patterns — wonderfully symmetrical where 
symmetry was aimed for, and with a smoothness of 
finish that has resisted the vicissitudes of thousands 
of years. In those early handicraft days such work 
was an art as well as a science ; and surely the crafts- 
men loved their labor, else they could not have exer- 
cised the patience necessary to the attainment of 
such excellence. When I remember how simple must 
have been the tools with which they wrought, I 
swell with pride over the skill of my Stone Age an- 

As the use of, bronze in Denmark supplanted the 
use of stone, as a material for the manufacture of 
implements and weapons, so the exhibit from the 
Bronze Age, in the National Museum, comes next 
after that from the New Stone Age. In one of the 
rooms in which the early Bronze Age finds are dis- 
played are the life-sized dummy figures of a man 
and woman, dressed in the costumes of the time — 
in garm.ents of sheep's wool, mixed with deer's hair. 
I was tremendously impressed to find that my great- 
grandparents of three thousand years ago actually 
wore woven garments — of simple pattern, it is true, 
but woven garments, nevertheless. Before visiting 
the Early Bronze room, I must have had a vague 
impression that at this period my forbears clad them- 
selves in the skins of wild beasts — like Adam and 
Eve and Robinson Crusoe. 

26 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

Lest you skeptically conclude, Cynthia, that the 
accouterments of the lady and gentlemen in the 
Early Bronze room were merely highly glorified 
reproductions of imaginary primitive costumes, I 
beg to assure you that the garments are faithful 
copies, both as regards style and material, of cloth- 
ing found in graves belonging to this ancient time. 
Isn't it astonishing that such things should have been 
preserved through the stretch of centuries? But it 
was due to no miracle. The coffins were made of 
roughly hewn and hollowed-out trunks of oak trees, 
and the tannic acid in the bark preserved not only 
the coffins but the clothing and other articles buried 
with the dead. 

Thanks also to the fact that the ancient Scandi- 
navians were careful to supply their dead with the 
necessaries and luxuries of the time, in order that the 
departed ones might live in comfort beyond the 
Great Divide, I was able to learn something about 
their knowledge of the decencies of life. For in- 
stance, I found that "in the flesh" they used horn 
combs, and that they expected to use them beyond 
the Divide. It is such a comfort not to have to pic- 
ture them with matted, tangled locks ! 

But by the Later Bronze Age the Scandinavians 
had become sufficiently advanced to burn their dead; 
consequently, the graves of this period throw less 
light upon their costumes and habits. The bronze 
articles, however, which the fire could not harm, 
show the same perfection of workmanship and the 
artistic beauty which one would expect to find in the 
descendants of the people of the Scandinavian New 
Stone Age. And like this age also, the Bronze Age 
was prolonged in Scandinavia ; iron did not come 

Entrance into Scandinavia; Copenhagen 27 

Into general use until four or five centuries before 
Christ; hence, the Scandinavians again had time for 
the practice which makes perfect. 

In the exciting days of the later time when the 
piratical raids of the Vikings caused the nations to 
the south to pray "Protect us, O Lord, from the 
fury of the Northmen!" simple burial was again 
introduced, but cremation was not completely aban- 
doned. The return to the more primitive method 
of disposing of the dead was, I suppose, due to imi- 
tation of Christian practice; for Christian observ- 
ances had a strong modifying influence in Scandi- 
navia long before Christianity itself was adopted 
there. It was undoubtedly imitation of their Chris- 
tian neighbors which led the Scandinavians of the 
late Viking period to engrave runic inscriptions upon 
the previously bare stones erected over the graves of 
the dead. But In the epitaphs the spirit of the de- 
parted was commended to the protection of the war- 
like Thor, who was at that time the favorite god of 
the North, and not to the gentle Christ. Such 
heathen grave stones are found In abundance In the 
museum. Another Christian practice which got the 
attention of the Scandinavians was the wearing of 
the cross and the crucifix as emblems or charms; In 
the pagan North this custom seems to have produced 
an enthusiasm for Thor's hammers, which were 
worked into ornamental patterns In jewelry and were 
also worn about the neck in the form of little silver 

Upon my first visit to the National Museum, I 
decided that I should like to take photographs of a 
few of the objects there. An American gentleman 
residing In Copenhagen whom I consulted about the 

28 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

matter Intimated that it was very doubtful whether 
I would be permitted to use a camera in the building; 
and he advised me to repeat my request through the 
American minister to Copenhagen, if the powers at 
the museum remained obdurate after I had person- 
ally approached them upon the subject. In conse- 
quence of this hint of coming difficulty, I armed my- 
self with all of the documents in my possession cal- 
culated to prove me a responsible and respectable 
person, and set forth. At the museum I asked to 
see the director, and was promptly piloted by a 
guard through what seemed an endless series of cor- 
ridors and passageways to the office of the Formi- 
dable One. I expected to see a Dane of grim appear- 
ance, curt manners, and an iron jaw. But the Herr 
Direcktor was far from that; he was a mild, absent- 
minded, somewhat frowsy-looking gentleman who 
would scarcely frighten a mouse. In spite of my 
surprise and relief, I preserved sufficient presence of 
mind to blurt out my request, at the same time plac- 
ing my letters of introduction, passport and diplo- 
mas in a jumbled heap upon the table before him. 

The Power behind the National Museum gazed 
blankly and absent-mindedly at the pile of docu- 
ments for a few seconds, and then asked, "What are 
those papers?" 

"They are my credentials," said I. 

"Credentials? I do not care to see your creden- 
tials," said he. "Take all the pictures you want." 

And I did. Wasn't the Herr Direcktor a nice 

I have since learned that the Scandinavian people 
are surprisingly generous and helpful toward all 
serious students who come to their land for the pur- 

Entrance into Scandinavia; Copenhagen 29 

pose of working in their libraries and museums. 
They are honest themselves and expect honest treat- 
ment from others, and generally receive it, too, I 
think, else they would hardly continue their liberal 

But I fear that I may have bored you with my 
ramblings in archaeological fields, haunted by the 
ghosts of ancient heathen Scandinavians. By way 
of variety, you might like to hear about my visit to 
"Runde Taarn" (the Round Tower) , which is above 
ground, and modern and of Christian construction. 
No pun was intended, but it happens that the tower 
was really built by Christian IV of Denmark, who 
lived in the early part of the seventeenth century. It 
was originally erected for an astronomical observa- 
tory and — together with an important library — was 
connected with a church, built at the same time, 
which was given the doubly significant name. Church 
of the Trinity. 

For a short time Tycho Brahe, who, because of 
his birth in southern Sweden in the days when it was 
controlled by Denmark, is claimed by both Swedes 
and Danes, worked in the observatory. Tycho had 
received much kindness at the hands of Frederick 
II, Christian's predecessor, but it soon was evident 
that the new ruler, great though he was in many 
ways, did not appreciate the genius of the astrono- 
mer, and not only cut off the pension which had been 
granted to Tycho by the late king, but also forbade 
him to continue his investigations. Before this, 
Tycho Brahe had gained the hatred and contempt 
of the nobility, to which rank he belonged, by dar- 
ing to do anything so useful as to study astronomy; 
he had been ostracised by his family as a result of 

30 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

his marriage with a peasant girl; and had roused the 
jealous indignation of physicians by free medical at- 
tendance upon the poor. Now, when his king turned 
against him, the astronomer shook the dust of un- 
appreciative Denmark from his feet for good and 
all, and went to Germany, where he taught the Ger- 
man astronomer Kepler, who became greater than 
he. Kepler's teacher, however, will be long remem- 
bered not only because of the fundamental discov- 
eries which he made, but also because his name is 
fixed in the sky. Perhaps you will recall that in the 
old normal school days when I gave ''astronomy 
parties," one particularly large lunar crater stared 
down at us through the telescope like the eye of a 
Cyclops. That one is named Tycho, for the Scandi- 
navian astronomer, Tycho Brahe. 

Though Tycho Brahe went, the Round Tower 
stayed on; and it was used for astronomical pur- 
poses until about fifty years ago. It might have been 
so used still, except for its popularity as a general 
landscape-gazing observation tower, in spite of the 
opposition of the professors, who finally abandoned 
it for purposes of investigation. 

The top of the tower is reached not by a spiral 
staircase, but by a wide spiral roadway of brick, 
deeply grooved by the carriage wheels of celebrities 
who drove to the top in days gone by. Peter the 
Great, for one, seems to have found the ascent of 
Runde Taarn a favorite amusement when he visited 
Denmark. It is stated that when he made his last 
ascent it was in a coach drawn by six horses, and 
that Queen Catherine sat at his side and held the 
lines. Until recent years also, in accordance with 
time-honored custom, newly confirmed children 

Entrance into Scandinavia; Copenhagen 31 

climbed to the top of the tower for a view of the 
surrounding land; thus they celebrated their formal 
entrance into manhood and womanhood, and thus 
they were introduced to the world in which they 
were thenceforth to play a larger part. 

With the coming of the flying machine, however, 
and other devices for producing more exquisite 
thrills, Runde Taarn was left pretty much to the or- 
dinary tourist, who pays his ten-ore entrance fee and, 
like myself, climbs laboriously along the worn road- 
way to the top. But once up there under the flut- 
tering folds of Dannebrog, the beautiful red and 
white flag of the Danes, your tourist — meaning my- 
self — gazes out over the city feeling fully rewarded 
for her exertions. For the view is a splendid one 
and reveals practically all of the famous buildings of 
the city, with their peculiar towers and domes, spires 
and steeples, as well as the parks and boulevards 
interspersed between, and the harbor with its many 
ships, and the Sound beyond. 

Around the edge of the platform at the top of the 
tower are double railings. The inner one, I learned, 
was put up in the 1890's, during a suicide epidemic. 
Before it was erected several melancholy Danes had 
taken arms against a sea of troubles and had ended 
them by a flying leap over the solitary railing. Now, 
such a spectacular termination of one's earthly ca- 
reer is no longer possible. 

Another monument to Christian IV's interest in 
building is the Castle of Rosenborg. Formerly this 
royal residence was v/ell outside of Copenhagen, but 
during the centuries the city has grown to such a 
degree that now the beautiful royal park and castle 
are in its very heart. Perhaps it was the magic of 

32 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

the day of my visit to it which lent Rosenborg part 
of its fascination; for the sky was of the clearest 
blue and the sunshine was wonderfully golden. Yet 
the castle itself, irrespective of the day, looked just 
like the castles in all proper fairy tales. With its 
red brick walls outlined in Renaissance softness, it 
stood in its setting of grass and trees, looking inde- 
scribably "homey" and inviting. About it clustered 
the great rose gardens blooming so triumphantly 
and invitingly that as I approached across the park I 
felt a stranger to my recent self. It seemed as if 
fairy tales might be true, or as if I myself might be 
a child in a fairy book. 

But to cross the threshold was to be disillusioned; 
for Danish kings and queens and gallant knights 
and ladies fair no longer dwell within. The castle 
is a museum; since 1863 it has been the repository of 
the "Danish Kings' Chronological Collection." And 
royal "old clothes," though sometimes interesting, 
are incapable of working enchantment. The col- 
lection of relics at Rosenborg, however, is one of the 
richest in Europe, and is exceedingly varied. In it 
one may find royal souvenirs ranging from the lock 
of hair of Christian I, who lived four hundred and 
fifty years ago, to the couch upon which the late 
Christian IX was in the habit of taking his noonday 

Before telling you about the collection more fully, 
however, I wish tq explain to you the time-honored 
custom of naming the Danish kings, lest you become 
utterly bewildered among the Christians and Fred- 
ericks. The system is really a very simple one ; for, 
since the accession of the Oldenburg house to the 
throne four hundred and fifty years ago, all of the 

City Hall (Right) and Palace Hotel (Left), Copenhagen 

Rosenborg Castle, Copenhagen 

Entrance into Scandinavia; Copenhagen 33 

kings — with one single exception — have been Chris- 
tians or Fredericks, appearing alternately. The ex- 
ception was the son of Christian I who ruled as 
King Hans. Ideally, he should have been named 
Frederick, for his successor was Christian; but, as 
it was, the Christians got the start of the Fredericks 
by one reign; so the late Christian IX was suc- 
ceeded by the late Frederick VIII. And I suppose 
that henceforth even to the end of Danish kings the 
alternation of Fredericks and Christians will con- 

Every Christian and every Frederick is, I pre- 
sume, represented at Rosenborg by at least one relic, 
but I have no intention of boring you with an ex- 
haustive catalogue of them. However, a few of 
the objects which for one reason or another caught 
my attention may not be without interest to you. 
Christian IV, the builder of the castle, who is gen- 
erally considered Denmark's best-beloved king, is 
naturally well represented in the museum. It was 
this Christian, you will remember, who led the un- 
successful Protestant forces during the Danish pe- 
riod of the Thirty Years' War. While the struggle 
was on, Christian had a vision — or thought he had 
— with reference to the war. In one of the show- 
cases at Rosenborg is a miniature painting of the 
vision, accompanied by a description by the king. 
A further proof that Christian IV had a part in the 
superstition of his time is a piece of jade which he 
wore as a charm against gout. 

After taking his turn in the Thirty Years' War, 
Christian valiantly fought the Swedes in the great 
battle of the Baltic; but in the engagement one of 
his eyes was put out by a splinter. The cap which 

34 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

he wore, with a green patch attached to protect the 
wounded organ, is another souvenir of Christian 
IV's reign to be found at Rosenborg. You remem- 
ber well, I am sure, Longfellow's translation of 
Evald's song, "King Christian," which is one of the 
favorite national songs of the Danes. It begins: 

''King Christian stood by the lofty mast 

In mist and smoke; 
His sword was hammering so fast, 
Through Gothic helm and brain it passed; 
Then sank each hostile hulk and mast, 

In mist and smoke." 

That King Christian was Christian IV, and the 
battle was the battle of the Baltic. 

In the exhibit belonging to the period of Fred- 
erick III, the successor to this famous Christian, 
are pieces of alchemical gold. I was surprised at 
this, for I had not supposed that the attempts to 
change the baser metals into gold lingered so late 
as the seventeenth century. But perhaps the Dan- 
ish "artificial gold" was not the result of any serious 
attempt to find a short-cut to wealth. 

It was during the reign of the next Frederick that 
Czar Peter of Russia visited Denmark. Frederick 
IV and Peter were pretty good friends, partly be- 
cause of their common enmity for Charles XII of 
Sweden, "the madman of the North." In the Corri- 
dor of Frederick IV is the bust of Peter, and also a 
goblet and a compass of ivory, both of which were 
made by Peter, who knew how to use his hands as 
well as his head. In the apartments of Frederick 
are also a bottle containing a little of the oil with 

Entrance into Scandinavia; Copenhagen 35 

which the Danish king was anointed at coronation, 
and a table and a chair of chased silver used by him 
and his successors at the formal opening of the 
Danish parliament. 

Frederick VI lived in the troubled period of the 
Napoleonic wars; and as a result of his desire to 
remain neutral, he saw his capital bombarded by 
the British fleet. This provoked the Danes to ally 
themselves with France, against England, and they 
paid for doing so, in 18 14, by the loss of Norway to 
Sweden. A curious souvenir of this Napoleonic war 
time Is a ship of the line made by Danish sailors 
from bones found in the soup served to them while 
they were prisoners of war of the English. 

I particularly wish, Cynthia, that you could have 
seen the grand old banqueting hall on the top floor 
of Rosenborg. It restored to me the atmosphere of 
fairy lore and romance which the museum of relics 
of defunct royalty had dispelled. The great room 
is finely proportioned, and is well lighted by large 
windows which give a fine view of the park. On the 
pane of one of these windows was the name "Alex- 
andra" — scratched with a diamond — to which a 
guard near at hand proudly called my attention. 
The dowager Queen Alexandra of England is the 
daughter of the late Christian IX, you remember. 
The present appearance of the room dates from the 
time of Christian V, two hundred years ago. The 
ceiling is of dark oak set with panels painted by 
famous artists. On the walls are twelve Gobelin 
tapestries, woven at the order of Christian V in 
honor of some rather doubtful victories won by him 
in southern Sweden. Tall silver candle-sticks have 
been placed at intervals around the sides of the 

36 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

room; and, here and there, against the walls are 
great arm chairs, and stiff, grand-looking, high- 
backed ones, upholstered in rich embroidery. Be- 
fore the fireplace are two silver firedogs and a silver 
firescreen bearing Christian V's monogram. The 
royal thrones stand at one end of the room; that of 
the king was constructed from the ivory of whales' 
teeth in the i66o's, while the queen's, which is of sil- 
ver, was made in 1725. But to me, far more im- 
pressive than these antique seats of the mighty were 
three couchant silver lions, large as Newfoundland 
dogs, which stand in front of thrones. 

The lions represent the three divisions of Scandi- 
navia, which, through the Union of Calmar, were, 
in 1397, united by the great Queen Margaret under 
Danish rule. In 1523 Sweden revolted against the 
tyranny of Christian II, "the Nero of the North," 
and established her independence under Gustav 
Vasa; and Norway was finally lost to Denmark a 
century ago. Nevertheless, these three particular 
lions are still used at royal funerals,, at special sol- 
emn audiences granted by the king, and at the open- 
ing of the Danish parliament when the king is pres- 
ent. And three lion emblems still appear upon the 
Danish coat-of-arms. Sweden, however, has long 
since ceased objecting to the implied insult, for she 
well knows that Denmark has no unholy designs 
upon Swedish territory. Indeed, it is a case of tit 
for tat; for during the long period of enmity and 
warfare between Denmark and Sweden, following 
the separation, Sweden retaliated by placing three 
Scandinavian crowns upon her shield; and there they 
are to-day, even though the two countries are now 
the best of friends. Norway, on the other hand, is 

Entrance into Scandinavia; Copenhagen 21 

more modest; probably made so by her four cen- 
turies of domination by Denmark and her later un- 
equal union with Sweden. Upon Norway's coat-of- 
arms are seen one solitary rampant lion and one 
solitary Scandinavian crown. Rejoicing in her tardy 
freedom, Norway is satisfied merely to be free; 
''Alt for Norge" (All for Norway), the motto 
which appears upon her coins beneath the head of 
King Haakon, reflects only this intense patriotic joy; 
the ''Alt" carries no thought of unfriendly designs 
upon the property of Norway's neighbors. 


more about copenhagen; the copenhageners' 
country gardens 

Copenhagen, Denmark, 

July 26, 191 — . 
My dear Cynthia: 

You have probably noticed that I have not as yet 
mentioned the art museums of Copenhagen. That 
fact is due to the modesty of the amateur in the 
presence of the professional. However, as I know 
that you will want my "reaction," I confess to hav- 
ing visited two museums of art. Thorwaldsen's I 
visited yesterday. It is a huge, ugly, tomb-shaped 
building, constructed at the expense of the city of 
Copenhagen as a permanent home for the works of 
the greatest of Danish sculptors. And it is really a 
tomb as well as a museum, for Bertel Thorwaldsen, 
in whose honor it was erected, lies buried in the 
court under a great mass of dark ivy. As in ancient 
classical tombs, a frescoed border around the out- 
side wall depicts scenes from the life of the entombed 
one. Among other events connected with Thor- 
waldsen's successes is represented his triumphal re- 
turn to Copenhagen in 1838, after the long, hard 
years of apprenticeship to his art in Rome. Above 
the main entrance is the gift of the late King Chris- 
tian — a Victory reigning in her quadriga. This 


More About Copenhagen 39 

beautiful piece of bronze was designed by Thor- 
waldsen himself, but was executed by another Dan- 
ish sculptor, Herman Bissen. 

What impressed me most of all about the museum 
was the tremendous amount of work which Thor- 
waldsen turned off. There are scores and hundreds 
of sculptures, drawings and paintings by him. As 
you know, most of his subjects are classical — as 
would be expected of the founder of the neo-classi- 
cal school. But there are really very few of his 
works for which I care. Thorwaldsen's people do 
not look as if they had ever accomplished anything; 
they bear too few marks of life's battles; they are 
too passive, too gentle, too restful. The "Christ," 
I admit, possesses a benignance and serenity which 
is overmastering; and the bas-reliefs of "Night" 
and "Morning" are exquisite. But the draperies of 
some of his Greeks do look painfully like wash- 
boards. Judging from the "Lion of Lucerne," 
Thorwaldsen was more successful with animals. The 
"Lion" is my favorite. He has kept his trust, has 
fought a good fight, and is dying grandly — but in 
anguish of mind because even the sacrifice of life 
itself was insufficient to save the lilies of France. 
However, I do not consider the "Lion" character- 
istic of Thorwaldsen's work. Do you? 

Unlike Thorwaldsen's Museum, the Ny Carlsberg 
Glyptotek, which I also visited, had its origin in 
individual generosity. Its founder was Captain 
Carl Jacobsen, "Ph. D., Brewer," who is the Car- 
negie and Rockefeller of Denmark. He is a great 
lover of art, and his country has profited accord- 
ingly. Jacobsen money has paid for the New and 
Old Glyptoteks, two of the finest art museums in 

40 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

Scandinavia. Probably you are shocked at the idea 
of the love of art being fostered by "beery" money. 
I was at first, I acknowledge, and I still wish that 
the "wherewithal" had been secured in some other 
way; but I have been assured that the Carlsberg 
brew is of a particularly pure quality — as beers go 
— and that the Jacobsens are really patriotic, pub- 
lic-spirited Danes. 

The New Glyptotek is a handsome building occu- 
pying a whole city block. The interior is beauti- 
fully decorated with rare woods, colored marbles, 
and frescoes. And it contains collections of paint- 
ings and sculptures representing most of the coun- 
tries of Europe. As you well know, I was never 
orthodox in my preferences among works of art — 
especially paintings. It was probably in consequence 
of this peculiarity that I was drawn to a canvas 
which most people would, I suppose, pass by. The 
picture is "Denmark," by Elizabeth Jerichau-Bau- 
mann, and was painted more than sixty years ago. 
Denmark is represented by a young woman, strong, 
determined, and fearless, standing amidst sheaves 
of rye; in her left hand she bears Dannebrog, the 
red-and-white crusaders' flag of the Danes, which 
she is prepared to defend with the two-edged sword 
grasped in her right. 

The sculptures in the New Carlsberg are, I think, 
finer than the. paintings. The French collection is 
the most complete to be found outside of France it- 
self. It is not necessary to tell you that in plastic 
art France is far ahead of Denmark. Yet there 
were several Danish pieces for which I cared very 
much — some by Herman Bissen, and particularly 
some by Jens Adolf Jerichau. I was much attracted 



More About Copenhagen 41 

by the latter's "Little Girl with a Dead Bird." It 
is in white marble. The little girl, barefooted and 
simply dressed, is sitting upon a rock with the bird 
tenderly held between her hands ; and upon her face 
is an expression of gentle pity which gives a peculiar 
charm to the whole figure. But, to me, the most 
pleasing of all the Danish sculptures was a grave 
monument by an obscure young artist, Rudolf 
Tegner. It represents the mourning figure of a 
young woman, whose face is left buried in the orig- 
inal mass of white marble. There is an exquisite 
delicacy about the slender, drooping form to which 
no picture that I might send you could do justice. 
A similar figure, in bronze, marks the grave of the 
artist's mother at Elsinore. 

Perhaps you would be interested in learning how 
I spent yesterday, which was Sunday. Like all of 
my Danish days, this was crammed with new im- 
pressions. In the morning I attended services at 
Vor Frue Kirke — the Church of Our Lady. In this 
church are the greyish blue marble originals of Thor- 
waldsen's "Christ and Apostles." The statues are 
of heroic size and are exceedingly impressive. Be- 
sides myself, there were six other tourists viewing 
the church — five alert-looking boys and a middle 
aged man, evidently their tutor. One glance was 
sufficient to tell me that they were Americans. I, 
too, must have had a "Made-in-America" appear- 
ance, for before I had uttered a sound one of the 
boys who happened to stand near me while I was 
studying the "Christ," began to address me in 
"American," commenting intelligently upon the 
beautiful figure. The unassuming friendliness of the 
boy quite warmed my heart. When services began 

42 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

the party seated themselves in the rear of the room 
and took notes and read their guide-books for a 
time; and then tiptoed quietly out. I felt lonesome 
when they had gone, and decided to go cousin-hunt- 
ing the very next day. 

Like the vast majority of Scandinavian churches, 
Our Lady is State Lutheran. But the Scandinavi- 
ans, though instinctively religious, are by no means 
regular church-goers; and summer Sundays in Co- 
penhagen are more likely to be devoted to recrea- 
tion than to formal worship. Consequently, the con- 
gregation was a mere scattered handful; most of the 
worshipers were old people who came early, wear- 
ing solemn expressions, and carrying prayer-books. 
The preacher was a little old man in black gown 
and white linen ruff, suggestive of pictures of Sir 
Walter Raleigh. From a lofty and magnificent pul- 
pit, reached by a staircase, he preached his sermon. 
The solemn faces of the congregation had led me to 
expect a self-righteous, theological presentation con- 
taining conspicuous thanks to God that Danish State 
Lutherans are not as other men; but I was much 
relieved to hear a live human message, not read, but 
clearly and feelingly spoken, in which the pastor 
urged his hearers to lives of loving service to their 
fellow humans. I liked the little old pastor, and 
forgot that I was homesick for "my own United 

I think that you would have enjoyed the music, 
Cynthia, for it possessed a dignity and reserve con- 
ducive to reverence. You may be interested to learn 
that the choir was composed entirely of women, and 
that a woman played the pipe organ. 

After the services were ended, I had luncheon in a 

More About Copenhagen 43 

restaurant close at hand ; and then I went for a long, 
rambling walk, visiting some places which I had seen 
before and others that were new. I passed Runde 
Taarn again, bound for Kongens Nytorv, one of the 
finest squares of the capital, pleasant with shade 
trees, well-kept lawns, and an abundance of flowers, 
among which the cosmopolitan scarlet geranium 
seemed as much at home as in California. On the 
Nytorv is the Royal Theatre, an imposing Renais- 
sance structure. 

Twelve different streets lead out of the square. I 
made my exit by the most famous one, Bredgade 
(Broad Street), which for part of its length is lined 
with handsome shops. Copenhagen shopkeepers 
have a shrewd but gratifying way of keeping up the 
shades of their windows on Sundays, thus enabling 
the worldly-minded to enjoy gratuitously the beauty 
of the wares and to select the very articles which 
they would purchase were they rich. As I long since 
learned to 'name the birds without a gun, to love the 
wood-rose and leave it on its stalk,' I am particu- 
larly fond of this mental shopping; it is a pleasant 
pastime, devoid of the worry and wear of the physi- 
cal kind. The display of antiques, pictures, and 
porcelains on Bredgade is unusually interesting. An- 
tiques, in general, but rarely attract me — except as 
do curios in a museum — for many of them have little 
else than their age to recommend them; and age, in 
itself, is no virtue. Some of the old furniture, and 
the bronzes which I saw in the windows on Bred- 
gade, were, however, very handsome. 

But the paintings and the porcelains especially 
caught my eye. To my mind (and I believe you 
would agree with me), many of the works by young 

44 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

Scandinavian artists would hold their own against 
modern paintings in any European country. They 
are genuinely Scandinavian. It is such a satisfaction to 
know that the Scandinavian lands have really begun 
to make a distinct contribution to the art treasures 
of the world. And as for porcelain, I am simply 
mad over the Royal Copenhagen variety; it is almost 
as difficult for me to pass a display of this ware 
without stopping, and gazing, and lingering, as it is 
for a toper to resist a grog shop. The makers of 
the Copenhagen pieces are high-grade artists, and 
their work beggars my attempts at description. 
Much of the attractiveness seems to lie in the glaze; 
it is exquisite, and it gives to the delicate colors an 
appearance of remoteness and a subtlety of charm 
and refinement which seems almost to belong to the 
realm of the spiritual. Compared with the Royal 
Copenhagen, most other "China" impresses me as 
loud and bizarre. But the prices of the pieces which 
I should have wanted to buy, had I been anything 
more than a mental shopper, would pay for my whole 
Scandinavian tour; hence, I am not likely to carry 
home with me very extensive samples of the ware. 

In the course of my rambles I reached the Marble 
Church. This building was begun more than a cen- 
tury and a half ago, but lack of funds delayed its 
completion until within the last thirty years, when it 
was finished at the expense of Herr Tietgen, a phil- 
anthropic Danish banker. In architectural style and 
richness of material, this building contrasts strongly 
with Our Lady, which is really conspicuous by its 
plainness — except for Thorwaldsen's sculptures. 
The Marble Church, as its name implies, is con- 
structed primarily of m.arble ; and it is crowned with 

More About Copenhagen 45 

a great dome — suggestive of Saint Paul's in London 
— covered with copper partially gilded. A large 
number of busts and statues of ecclesiastics and 
saints also decorate the exterior. Outside, above the 
entrance, are the words, "Herrens Ord bliver even- 
delig" (The Word of God is everlasting). The 
main room beneath the dome is perfectly circular 
and is rich with wood-carvings, colored marbles, mo- 
saics, paintings, and statues. There is a fortune of 
gold-leaf in the crucifixes and candle-sticks. 

The guard at the door to whom I paid my en- 
trance fee recommended the view from the dome 
and supplied me with a pair of opera glasses; so 
after viewing the interior I mounted to the top. 
This I accomplished by groping my way up a dark, 
narrow, winding stair-case, some parts of which were 
as dark as a pocket — and in the darkest part bump- 
ing squarely into a couple of women who were on 
their way down. As the Marble Church is quite a 
distance from Runde Taarn, I gained a new and dif- 
ferent view of Copenhagen from its dome; and I 
also gained considerable information about the most 
important buildings from a friendly Danish lady 
whom I found at the top. 

Amalienborgtorv, or square, which is near the 
Marble Church, was my next objective point. It is 
a stone-paved place, ungladdened by trees or grass 
or flowers, with a large bronze equestrian statue of 
Christian V in the center. On each of the four sides 
is a royal palace in rococo style, in which the king 
and queen and other members of the royal family 
reside during most of the year. When I crossed 
the Torv, soldiers in high, bearskin caps stood on 
guard at the street entrances — a sign that the king 

4^ Cousin Hiinhng in Scandinavia 

was in residence. 

After Rosenborg, Amalienborg seemed so dreary 
and uninteresting — especially since common visitors 
get no glimpse of the interior — that I did not linger, 
but walked on to Gronningens Esplanade, where St. 
Alban's, the first English church to be built in Den- 
mark, peeps out with a charm peculiarly English 
from a clump of trees bordering an arm of the 

North of St. Alban's is Langelinie, the most 
beautiful promenade in Copenhagen. To the left 
of the promenade is a park, and to the right lies the 
harbor, filled with all sorts of water craft bearing 
the flags of many nations, including our own ''Old 
Glory," which looked wondrous good to me. Great 
crowds of people — young and old, parents and chil- 
dren — dressed in their Sunday clothes, were passing 
to and fro upon Langelinie, all looking healthy and 

I returned through the beautiful, shady park. 
Upon the benches under the trees I noticed many 
women serenely chatting, their fingers busy with 
sewing, embroidery, or knitting. Would you call 
such a Sabbath occupation scandalous and unseemly? 
I must confess that I was more impressed with the 
women's industry than I was shocked by their dese- 
cration of the day. 

Farther on, I took a peep into the Citadel. It 
dates from the seventeenth century, and is of red 
brick, with tree-covered ramparts. Soldiers were 
standing on guard at the entrance, and were passing 
back and forth between the buildings. Unlike Eng- 
land and the United States, Denmark, I regret to 
say, requires military service of all of her able- 

More About Copenhagen 47 

bodied men. She maintains what is, in proportion 
to her population, a large standing army. 

This morning, true to the resolution made at Frue 
Kirke, I called upon Cousin Lars. Cousin Lars is 
really my mother's cousin, but as he has always been 
her favorite cousin he has seemed a sort of an uncle 
to me. Many years ago, when I was a tiny child, 
Cousin Lars spent several years in California, which 
he expected to make his permanent home; but his 
young wife suddenly died, and it was her dying re- 
quest that he take their children back to the home 
land and rear them. This caused him to return to 

Cousin Lars still loves the United States, how- 
ever, and, though "blood is thicker than water," I 
really believe that he welcomed me more heartily as 
a Californian, recently "come over," than as a cou- 
sin. For he quickly convinced me that I was thrice 
welcome — and caused me to regret keenly that I had 
delayed so long making known to him my presence 
in Copenhagen. He wished to send immediately to 
the hotel for my baggage ; and without consulting me 
he asked his housekeeper to have a room prepared 
for my reception. But when I informed him that I 
was booked to sail from Copenhagen to-night he 
abandoned his plan, stipulating, however, that I was 
to be his guest upon my return. 

I made my call early this morning in order to be 
sure to find Cousin Lars at home, for the Danes are 
fresh-air people and all who can afford to do so 
spend their afternoons in the city parks or in the 
country. And in consequence of my early call I en- 
joyed the pleasure of a real Danish home luncheon 
with my cousin. Yet it was not so genuinely Danish, 

48 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

after all, except the food, which, like all food I have 
tasted in Denmark, was good. The luncheon was 
really Danish- American, for Cousin Lars, in my hon- 
or, had the table set with the silverware bought years 
ago in the Far West, and at one end of the table he 
placed a little silk Dannebrog with the white cross 
on the red field, and on the other my own Stars and 
Stripes. As a sign that this was a very festive oc- 
casion, both flags were at the very tip-top of their 
masts. Our conversation was also Danish-American. 
At times we spoke Danish, my contribution being of 
a very bad quality; at others, we spoke "American," 
Cousin Lars' efforts showing rust for want of use; 
and, occasionally, when the borrowed languages 
seemed inadequate, we would resort to our own re- 
spective mother tongues and exchange remarks in 
Danish and American. 

After luncheon I learned that Cousin Lars had 
planned to spend the afternoon in the country in his 
"garden," and I urged that he execute the plan and 
take me along. He did, and I had such a pleasant, 
untouristlike time ! We started on the street cars, 
but a strike of carmen interrupted our progress; 
then we walked the remainder of the way — as I pre- 
ferred doing so to taking a carriage — and Cousin 
Lars called attention to the places of interest which 
we passed. 

Near the outskirts of the city, a "folke skole," or 
elementary public school, which was being repainted, 
caught my eye, and we went in to explore. This was 
one of the free schools to which the poor people send 
their children. The class rooms were well lighted 
and well ventilated and generally comfortable. In 
fact, the building pretty closely resembled those of 

More About Copenhagen 49 

our own elementary schools. A few good pictures, 
Including portraits of Hans Christian Andersen and 
Bertel Thorwaldsen, were on the walls. Upon the 
second floor were completely equipped departments 
for the teaching of cooking and sewing; and in an- 
other part of the building was a manual-training 

Farther out along the street I noticed a bread-line 
of children. A woman was handing out generous- 
looking sandwiches to twenty or thirty little people 
as they filed past her in an irregular line. These 
were children, Cousin Lars said, whose parents were 
not able to supply them with proper food. While 
school was in session they were supplied with lunch- 
eons at public expense; and now, during vacation, 
one of their teachers, a noble-hearted young woman, 
had assumed the task of keeping the active young 
bodies somewhat adequately nourished. She herself 
is poor, but she solicits money from private individ- 
uals with which to purchase food; and this food she 
personally distributes daily. I am glad to be able to 
say, however, that such cases of want are compara- 
tively rare. The splendid spirit of cooperation 
shown by the Danish people in their industrial life 
has produced a degree of prosperity which is truly 
remarkable, in view of the resources of the country. 

And now for the garden — for we soon reached it. 
It is a tiny plat of ground of about four thousand 
square feet, which Cousin Lars has planted to the 
choicest kind of flowers, selected with the view to 
securing an unbroken succession of bloom, begin- 
ning with the earliest varieties and ending with the 
latest. There are also a few shade trees, and along 
the fence are berry bushes. In the rear of the lot 

50 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

Is an arbor covered with a picturesque tangle of 
woodbine and climbing rose ; and close beside it is a 
one-roomed bungalow, so overgrown with clematis, 
now in bloom, that the little building looks like a 
giant purple bouquet. The bungalow room is fur- 
nished with a table, a couch, two or three comfort- 
able chairs, a case containing books and magazines. 
Attached like a barnacle to the outside of the build- 
ing is a tiny kitchenette, containing an oil stove and a 
stock of provisions. 

We were hungry, of course, after our walk, so as 
soon as we arrived we proceeded to prepare a lunch- 
eon. I made coffee on the oil stove while Cousin 
Lars fished all sorts of delectable canned and pre- 
served foods from the shelves in the barnacle and 
arranged them in artistic confusion upon the table in 
the arbor — which is the dining room of the estab- 
lishment. And while we consumed the coffee and 
the delectables Cousin Lars told me about the "gar- 
den." It is his play place; he goes out to work 
among his flowers almost every afternoon; and he 
and his sons quite frequently spend their Sundays 
there, having a picnic luncheon in the arbor. Until 
a few years ago, he had a house in town set in the 
midst of a large garden; but when the din of the 
growing city became too offensive, he sold the place, 
rented his present top flat on a blind and, conse- 
quently, quiet street, and secured this garden — an ar- 
rangement which he likes much better. Copenhagen 
is very decidedly a city of flat-dwellers. 

But the interesting and really splendid fact con- 
nected with the garden is that Cousin Lars's is only 
one of fifteen hundred little gardens, all of which 
have sprung up around Copenhagen within the past 

More About Copenhagen 51 

ten years. The land is leased by those who work it 
from the commune of Copenhagen or from private 
individuals. Plats of as few as sixteen hundred 
square feet may be rented from the commune for 
one-half to three-fourths of an ore per square foot 
annually. Land owned by private individuals rents 
a little higher. Water is piped to the lots by the 
owners, who also furnish free wheelbarrows for use 
in gardening. Several tiny lots form a block, as in 
a regular city, and between the blocks run diminutive 
streets about ten feet wide. Some of the narrow 
passagew^ays have such picturesque names as *'Rosen 
Alle," "Odins Alle," and the like. The Christian 
Danes have not completely forgotten the gods of 
their fathers, you see. The blocks, in tracts of ten 
acres or so, are surrounded by the owners with 
strong open-work fences; and each family holding 
land within the tract is supplied with a key to the big 
gate. Over the gate appears the name of the tract, 
which is sometimes "fancy," like "Flora" and "Iris." 
The renters fence their own little plats to suit 
their inclinations and pocket-books; and they build 
their houses after the same fashion. Since the "gar- 
dens" are merely daytime and fresh-air institutions, 
generally the buildings are one-roomed and tiny. In 
fact, they look as if they might be the play-houses 
of an army of parent-tired little children who had 
run away and set up for themselves. Many of the 
structures are very cheaply built. One "playhouse," 
which caught my attention, was an abandoned street 
car masquerading under a luxuriant mantle of vines ; 
but it was every bit as much of a success as an ortho- 
dox bungalow, for in the tiny yard several flaxen- 
haired, rosy-cheeked children were shouting and 

52 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

playing. Instead of house numbers, the owner's 
names, as a rule, appear over the doors — generally 
the names of women; but here and there I again 
noticed "fancy" names, such as "Johannes Haab" 
(Johanne's Hope) and "Christines Lyst" (Chris- 
tine's Joy) , which suggest how much the simple little 
recreation places mean to their owners. 

Aside from the narrow walks, every square foot 
of soil in each plat is just crammed with green things 
growing. In many cases where the houses indicated 
poverty, the ground was largely planted to vege- 
tables — one garden was a single large potato field. 
Since the rent amounts to only a few dollars per 
year, those who wish to do so can more than pay 
their expenses by their vegetables; and in addition 
they have all of the fun of the wholesome, out-of- 
door life. But most of the plats have been converted 
into charming flower gardens; and of all of these 
Cousin Lars's is the most worthy of the prize. 

Though many sorts and conditions of people are 
represented by the fifteen hundred plats, most of 
the renters are poor "working people." As a rule, 
the families pass their Sundays in the gardens, and 
in many cases the mother and children are there 
also during most of the long summer days. After 
work hours the father joins them for supper in 
the "playhouse," and later the whole happy family | 
returns to the city to sleep. 

I had heard of such "gardens" before; they have 
them in Germany, and call them "Lauben," or 
"Gartchen" ; and I was delighted at the chance to 
see them in detail for myself. Now, I only wish 
that we might have them around the great, congested 
cities in the United States. The population would 

More About Copenhagen 53 

be so much healthier, both mentally and physically, 
if gardening could be substituted for idle gossip, 
cheap society twaddle- — or worse. As Cousin Lars 
remarked on the way home, such wholesome, out- 
of-door recreation would go far towards settling 
many problems arising from city life. 

After we had explored the place to my heart's 
content, we walked to the end of a car line and 
rode back to the city. Now I am again in my room 
in the hotel, finishing up this letter to you, prepara- 
tory to my departure to-night. Cousin Lars and 
his sons are to be at the pier to wave good-by, so I 
shall not feel that I am in a "far country." Whither 
do you suppose that I am bound, Cynthia? 




August 6, 191- 
My dear Cynthia: 

''Bornholm!" I hear you exclaim. "Wherever 
in all Europe is Bornholm?" Bornholm, I reply, 
is the "backwoods" of Denmark, the "pearl of the 
Baltic," and altogether the loveliest place in the 
world — next to the choicest bits of my own fair 
land. Look on your map of Denmark, and you will 
see in the extreme east, as if it had strayed away 
from the other Danish islands and become lost, a 
trapezoid-shaped scrap of territory; that is Born- 
holm — the birthplace of my mother. When a child, 
I was very fond of reading "Robinson Crusoe" and 
"Swiss Family Robinson," in consequence of which 
my ideal terrestrial paradise was a desert island 
near the Equator. And many were the dreams which 
I wove about the tropical spot, well populated with 
talking parrots and chattering monkeys. But if I 
could now, rich with my present experience, dream 
them over again, I should substitute Bornholm, in 
the Baltic — at least for summer residence. 

I flew over here one evening more than a week 
ago, in the cabin of Omen (The Eagle), the trig- 
gest little steamship you ever could imagine. We 


Bornholm and the Bornholmers 55 

left at about nine o'clock, and Cousin Lars and his 
sons were at the pier to wave good-by, as planned. 
Contrary to even her summer habits, the Baltic was 
again beautifully calm for my sailing, so the cross- 
ing was made on schedule time, and we reached 
here at about six o'clock the next morning. 

As you may well imagine, I rose early, and was 
on deck to see the arrival. When I came out of the 
cabin I saw a high, dark bank to the east. That 
was Bornholm. It is higher than the other Danish 
islands, and more rocky. In fact, geologically, it 
belongs to Sweden, for it is a continuation of the 
rock-ribbed Scandinavian peninsula. Soon I could 
distinguish trees and houses and windmills, and 
presently we glided past the light-houses at the ends 
of the breakwater and were in Ronne harbor, where 
a new cousin was on hand to bid me good-morning. 

Ronne, which has a population of about nine thou- 
sand, is the capital of Bornholm. So far as I have 
been able to learn, the little town is noted only for 
its quaintness ; and it is certainly quaint. Practically 
all of the houses except the public buildings are long 
and low and box-shaped, with red-tiled or slate roofs 
and brick or stone walls. Bay windows and other 
architectural protuberances are conspicuous by their 
absence; windows of the small "German" variety 
w^hich swing open like doors are in time-honored 
vogue instead; and their broad sills are simply 
crowded with potted plants. But there are no 
flower-filled "yards" or lawns in front to delight the 
passer-by. Gardens, the Danes seem to believe, 
are primarily for the pleasure of the owner, and are 
to be enjoyed in seclusion and privacy. Conse- 
quently, they are behind the houses and are generally 

56 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

surrounded by a high, close fence. My great aunt 
Karen, to whose home I went upon reaching here, 
has such a garden in her "back yard," — with patches 
of velvety grass, draperies of vines clinging to the 
fence, hedges of roses, and brilliant beds of blooming 
annuals. And in the midst of this "garden of de- 
light" is the vine-covered arbor in which we had 
our meals. 

The shops, as well as the dwelling houses, are low 
and box-shaped; and their show windows are small 
and crowded. There are no bold sign-boards on the 
gable ends of the buildings, as in the United States; 
instead, modest little "shingles" are generally stuck 
out by the tradesmen. 

Dwelling houses, as well as shops, extend to the 
sidewalks, and many encroach shamelessly upon 
them, even monopolizing the whole width, and push- 
ing the pedestrian out into the street. In fact, it is 
very evident that the houses in centuries past were 
just placed "any which way," and that later the 
sidewalks were filled in, along as straight a line as 
possible. Like the streets, they are of cobble stone, 
and are marked off from the former only by being 
a few inches higher. After what I have said, you 
would hardly expect these streets to be of the avenue 
or boulevard variety, would you? 

On my second day in Ronne I gained much quiet 
pleasure from wandering about the little town, not- 
ing the places of importance, and gazing in the shop 
windows at the rows of wooden shoes and other 
practical wares intended primarily for the native; 
and at the models of Danish castles and churches, 
and the exquisite displays of pottery and statuary, 
more calculated to catch the eye of the opulent tour- 

Bornholm and the Bornholmers SI 

1st. Such shops are clustered around Storetorv, the 
Large Square, to which the country people come in 
regularly to sell their produce. In the midst of the 
"torv" is a queer old stone fountain decorated with 
gigantic bronze snails. 

Forming part of Store Gade, Ronne's main street, 
are two small stones, one of them bearing the date 
"1658." All true Bornholmers are as proud of 
these stones as New Englanders are of Plymouth 
Rock, with its "1620;" for on this spot fell the 
Swedish commander, Printzenskjold — shot, time- 
honored tradition says, by a silver button, torn from 
the vest of the shooter and used as a bullet — when 
the Bornholmers rose in revolt against Swedish 
domination. By the treaty of Roskilde which fol- 
lowed Charles X's unwelcome visit over the frozen 
Great Belt, the Sw^edish king, you may remember, 
secured several Danish provinces. Bornholm was 
one of these. But the Bornholmers had not been 
consulted regarding the cession; and as they pre- 
ferred to be Danes, they did not "stay put." That 
is how it happens that I am half Danish in descent, 
rather than wholly Swedish — a distinction largely 
without a difference. And the distinction hangs upon 
a silver button. 

Bornholm still celebrates the anniversary of her 
victory over the Swedes; and within the last few 
years, at Hasle, where the revolt had its origin, a 
large monumental stone was erected, bearing the 
Danish coat-of-arms and the names of the men who 
headed the revolt. Of these, Jens Pedersen Kofoed, 
a Bornholmer who was a member of the Danish 
army, and Paul Anker, the pastor of the church of 
Hasle, are the most important. 

58 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

At some distance from the ''liberty stones" is 
Bornholm's Museum, — the special pride of all Born- 
holmers; and well it might be, for the collection 
there, in view of the smallness of the island, is an 
unusually large and fine one. The curator, a woman 
and a true Bornholmer, proudly informed me that 
Copenhagen would be most happy to possess the 
African collection. To me the objects of most in- 
terest, however, were those throwing light upon 
Bornholm's own history. These range from rude 
stone utensils out of the shadowy past of the island 
to an exhibit of graceful royal Copenhagen por- 
celain; — for Bornholm it is that supplies the clay 
from which the beautiful ware is made. The cost 
of manufacture seems to be too great to admit of the 
use of the porcelain for distinctly practical pur- 
poses; consequently, its functions are largely orna- 
mental, and it appears chiefly in the form of vases, 
plaques, and statuettes. The last-named class I 
gazed at most lingeringly, for the subjects were 
varied and especially alluring. There were won- 
derfully-glazed robin-red-breasts sunning themselves ; 
perky foxes with noses pointing skyward; sleepy, 
yawning tigers; cats crouching to spring upon un- 
conscious nibbling 'mice; kerchiefed Bornholm old 
ladies carrying market baskets, and busily knitting 
as they walked; and a fond pair of children, one of 
whom was hugging the very life out of a tousled 
fat puppy. So skilful had been the artist that I 
caught myself actually pitying the porcelain pup. 

In one room was an unusually large collection 
of "grandfather" clocks, with elaborately and 
quaintly decorated faces, and with crude, clumsy 
weights. Bornholm at one time was famous for the 

Bornholm's Museum and St. Morten's Street, Ronne 

Bridge Crossing the Old Moat at Hammershuus Castle 

Bornholm and the Bornholmers 59 

manufacture of this style of time-piece. And in an- 
other room were glass-cases filled with dummy Born- 
holm men and women and helpless-looking dummy 
babies, clad in the fashions of various past ages. 
The garb of these dummies convinced me that 
fashions are not actually growing worse; for surely 
clothes cannot be uglier or more uncomfortable in 
appearance than the ancient elegance behind the glass 
doors within the museum. 

One souvenir of unusual historical importance, the 
key to old Hammershuus Castle, is also on display 
among the exhibits. The castle, Bornholm's chief 
stronghold for centuries, was occupied by the 
Swedish garrison for some months previous to the 
revolt in 1658. But Hammershuus has now long 
been in ruins, and its key is resting from its labors 
among the other antique relics in Bornholm's 

In the art collection are several paintings by 
famous Danes; and a whole room is set aside for the 
works of Lars Hansen Tobiasen, the portrait artist 
who was Bornholm's own son. As yet, only a few 
of his pictures have been placed in the room — in- 
cluding portraits of himself and his parents, and of 
Oelenschlager, Denmark's greatest poet. One paint- 
ing by Tobiasen seemed to me quite unique; it is the 
arm of a young woman. That sounds cadaverous, 
doesn't it? — like an anatomical chart, or an illus- 
tration in a medical journal. But the portrait sug- 
gested anything but that; — for a portrait it was — 
of the arm of a Danish damsel instead of her face 
— expressive of individual character as well as of 
beauty of color and line. Tobiasen spent twenty 
years of his life in Sweden, where he painted the 

6o Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

royal family, and some of his pictures are there. 
Others are in Ronne, still in the possession of rela- 
tives; but with the passing of this generation, the 
curator told me, these last are by the artist's will to 
go to the museum. 

In a shed near the main building are the skeletons 
of moose and reindeer which roamed through the 
forests of prehistoric Bornholm. And outside in 
the yard are many runestones, graven by the hands 
of pagan Bornholmers. The island seems to have 
specialized upon these stones in times past, as well 
as upon grandfather clocks; for even to-day they 
stand here and there by the wayside and are, in 
many cases, still clearly marked with ancient runic 

After a short visit with my great aunt in Ronne, 
I spent a few happy days with my Uncle Johannes 
and Aunt Ingeborg in the interior of the island. My 
uncle and aunt drove to town to fetch me, and while 
Uncle let the fat horses jog along on their homeward 
way at a pace to suit themselves, I had a good op- 
portunity to see the objects of interest which Tante 
(the Danish for aunt), pointed out on the beautiful 
landscape. That place with the black smoke stacks 
was the great pottery factory; there, where the white 
walls shone between the trees, one of my cousins 
used to live; the large, four-armed windmill on the 
right did not pump water, as I had ignorantly sup- 
posed, but ground grist; the handsome, cream-col- 
ored villa on the left was the summer home of a 
wealthy Copenhagen merchant; and so on, until the 
journey ended. 

As we drove into the court at Uncle's, my cousins, 
a fair-haired, rosy-cheeked, blue-eyed flock, came 

Bornholm and the Bornholmers 6i 

running out to greet us. These children were so 
well-trained, and so natural and wholesome that they 
were a real pleasure to me. But do not conclude 
from this statement that I am implying a compari- 
son invidious to the American child, or that I hold 
up Danish children as models of deportment; for 
I have met some enfants terrible during the last 
week or two, even among my own kith and kin. I 
attribute the superiority of these particular cousins 
to their quiet country rearing. 

And that reminds me to speak of the great in- 
terest and curiosity with which they regarded me 
upon my first arrival. While I talked with Uncle, 
my cousins sat silently by, completely absorbed in 
watching me; and when he noticed them their 
father laughed and said, "Yes, my children; this is 
a genuine, native-born American." Then he ex- 
plained that I was the first native American that 
the children had ever seen. Few aliens except bona 
fide tourists reach the center of the island — and 
they merely pass through. It would take an Eskimo 
or a Patagonian to rouse a similar degree of in- 
terest in a country child of the cosmopolitan Far 

The manner in which I mutilated the king's 
Danish was also a source of much interest to them; 
for I suppose that they had never before heard 
broken Danish. They were too polite to show 
amusement; even at my most grotesque blunders 
not a smile crossed their faces; they were simply 
alert and fascinated — and silent. But when it oc- 
curred to them to try upon me the English which 
they had learned in the grades, we were promptly 
upon a very sociable footing; they took turns prac- 

62 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

tlclng their English vocabularies on me, and were 
delighted to find that the formulae had worked — 
that their school-learned language was comprehensi- 
ble to me. 

To the children of the neighbors I was also a 
whole menagerie of interest. They referred to me 
as "de fremmede dame" (the foreign lady), and 
whenever I opened my mouth to speak they waited 
around with bated breath to see what liberties I 
should take with their native tongue. 

Old-fashioned Danish farms are quite different 
from anything which we have in America; there- 
fore, you might like to know about Barquist, my 
uncle's place. On the afternoon of my arrival I went 
all over it with Uncle as a cicerone, and with Astrid, 
the smaller of the twins, clinging to my hand and 
practising her English whenever the opportunity 
offered. Such a farm as Barquist is called a "gaard" 
(or court), because of the fact that all of the build- 
ings are arranged in rectangular fashion about the 
stone-paved interior. The long dwelling house 
forms one side of the quadrangle; the sides are made 
up of machine shops and wagon sheds and store 
houses for hay and grain; and at the other end are 
the stables in which the live stock are kept. Roofed- 
over driveways separate the house from the other 
buildings. When the gates to the court are shut, 
the quadrangle forms a complete inclosure, and, 
consequently, furnishes much protection from stormy 
weather. The back doors of the dwelling house 
open into the court, in the middle of which stands 
the pump; and the front ones open into a large 
flower garden, which, you see, is outside of the quad- 

Bornholm and the Bornholmers 63 


Brick and plaster form the building material for 
the walls, and all of the roofs are covered with 
thatch of rye straw, which must, of course, be quite 
frequently renewed. As you may imagine, the 
thatched roofs lend a very picturesque air to the 
quadrangle, especially when there is a stork's nest 
in one corner. But straw roofs are going out of 
use because of the danger of fire from lightning; 
tiles are being substituted, and slate, and plain, 
prosaic shingles. 

Surrounding the buildings on every side were 
fields of barley and rye, golden unto the harvest. 
Dotted with silky red poppies and deep blue corn- 
flowers as they were, these grainfields presented a 
charming picture. Uncle admitted the beauty of 
nature's color scheme, but added, "To us farmers, 
the poppies and cornflowers are weeds; they choke 
out the grain." 

The interior of the house was a comfort, for it 
did not have the "cluttered up," junk-shop appear- 
ance produced in some American homes by over- 
furnishing. There was plenty of room to walk 
around without stumbling over, or knocking off, any- 
thing. The guest room, in which I slept, was so 
large that I felt out of doors in it. And the furni- 
ture was of corresponding proportions; the clothes- 
press could tuck away the whole wardrobe of an 
ordinary family; and the bed was even nearer kin 
to that in which Hans Christian Andersen's true 
princess slept than the one in my hotel room in 
Copenhagen. Cross my heart, Cynthia, there were 
nearly a dozen feather ticks of various sizes on that 
bed. Taught by my Copenhagen experience, I 

64 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

promptly dumped most of them on the floor, where 
they remained until morning, when I replaced them 
and gave them a poke or two, to produce a slept-on 
appearance, lest my aunt by any chance be led to 
suspect that I was not partial to Danish beds. 

In the brick-paved kitchen is a built-in oven, also 
of brick, such as was used in New England in co- 
lonial days. Most of the baking for the family is 
done here, but uncle also exchanges grain with the 
baker for immense loaves of rye bread. And the 
baker, I suppose, transfers the grain to the miller, 
in return for flour, in the placid, old-fashioned way. 

In the dining room was a very old grandfather's 
clock which ticked stolidly away, keeping more or 
less accurate time — mostly less. As a time-keeper 
it was not much, but you, as a fancier of the antique, 
would have loved the venerable case and the crotch- 
ety works. I wish, too, that you might have seen 
the lovely potted plants on the broad sill of the 
sunny dining-room windows. I never before saw 
such begonias as Aunt Ingeborg can grow. 

One morning shortly after my arrival. Uncle an- 
nounced that we were to go for an all-day picnic. I 
was quite willing, I assure you. My aunt, who is of 
the plump, comfortable, bustling type, soon had two 
great baskets packed with luncheon. These were 
stowed away under the broad rear seat of the car- 
riage. By eight o'clock we were off,— but the sun 
was well on his way by that hour. There were 
objects of interest all along the road, so Carle, my 
oldest cousin, and I studied my tourist map, which 
names every highway, large farm, church, and 
windmill on the island. Uncle laughed and called 
ys *'aegte turists'* — genuine tourists — but he was 

Bornholm and the Bornholmers 65 

really as much interested in the harmless gossip sup- 
plied by the map as any of the rest of us. 

Bornholm is a great place for cycling; once or 
twice we passed veritable flocks of cyclists. But I 
did not see a trace of an automobile. When I re- 
marked upon their absence Uncle said that it was 
a mere accident that we had met none, for there 
were automobiles on Bornholm. But they had not 
been there long. Originally, a few of the Copen- 
hageners who spent their summers on the island 
brought their machines with them, — but only for a 
short period, for the automobiles frightened the 
unsophisticated Bornholm horses quite out of their 
wits. After the machines had paid their first mad, 
chugging, snorting, honking visit to the island, and 
had left numerous splintered and smashed vehicles 
and irate farmers in their wake, a local law was 
passed prohibiting the desecration of placid little 
Bornholm by the mechanical monsters. Recently, 
however, the ban had been removed (Even the 
"pearl of the Baltic" follows in the wake of the pro- 
cession), and at present. Uncle triumphantly an- 
nounced — Uncle is a progressive in spite of his 
thatched roof — not only are tourist autos admitted, 
but the island even harbors two or three naturalized 
immigrant machines. 

At about ten o'clock we stopped for luncheon in a 
beautiful grove where there were tables and benches 
under the trees. While Tante went to a near-by 
inn for a pot of hot coffee, and the girls unpacked 
a basket and set a table. Uncle cut huge slices of 
rye bread and fed them to the horses. But please 
do not generalize from this last and conclude that 
Danish horses regularly live on rye bread; it was 

66 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

merely an extra, like an apple or a carrot in 
America, because we were picnicking. 

And wasn't it pleasant to picnic out under those 
grand old beeches? And wasn't I ravenously hun- 
gry, notwithstanding a seven-o'clock breakfast? And 
didn't Tante Ingeborg have the most delicious things 
to eat? — pickled herring, for instance, and smoked 
salmon sandwiches, and "rodgrod" — probably the 
most typical Danish dish — made by cooking sago in 
fruit juice, in which have been dropped raisins, 
currants, spices, and other tasty morsels, until the 
whole is of the consistency of custard. But then I 
am always hungry in Denmark, and the food is 
always delicious. Were I to stay here very long 
I should degenerate into an absolute epicure. 

As we neared Hammershuus Castle — our first 
goal — the road ran along the northeast coast through 
Allinge, a pretty little summer resort. Here we 
noticed a number of sun-browned women, wearing 
gay-colored bandanas on their heads in Topsy 
fashion, and carrying alpenstocks in their hands. 
They had been climbing over the clins. After pass- 
ing Allinge, to our left was The Hammer, an im- 
posing promontory of granite, which is being rapidly 
quarried away; and just ahead were the castle ruins. 
At the inn near at hand the horses were unhitched 
and stabled, the lunch baskets were removed and 
carried to a group of trees where there was a table 
just the right size, and here we had another meal; 
and all were again hungry. 

Then we explored the ruins. Hammershuus was 
first built in the thirteenth century and for much of 
the time since it has played an important part in 
Denmark's history. For a long time it, with the 

Bornholm and the Bornholmers 67 

remainder of Bornholm, was an object of dispute 
between the archbishops of Lund and the Danish 
kings. During much of the sixteenth century the 
German city of Liibeck controlled the castle; in the 
seventeenth, as I have told you, Sweden for a short 
period held dominion over it and the island. For 
some time after Denmark resumed control, Ham- 
mershuus remained the stronghold of Bornholm; but 
presently the islet near at hand, Christianso, was 
fortified, and the old castle was permitted to fall 
into ruins. Its destruction was hastened by the fact 
that stone was taken from it for public buildings 
in Ronne ; and subsequently it became a sort of public 
quarry. Until within a century ago, the domestic 
vandalism continued. Nevertheless, the Hammers- 
huus ruins are the finest in Denmark to-day. 

The old pile had quite enough of the character- 
istics of the orthodox mediaeval castle to satisfy the 
most romantic student of feudalism and chivalry. 
It stood on a high promontory with sheer cliffs on 
three sides. On the fourth was a moat through 
which flowed an arm of the sea, spanned by a draw- 
bridge. It is very easy to trace the whole ground 
plan of the castle, for many of the great walls of 
unhewn stone still stand, picturesquely overgrown 
with shrubs and trees. I was especially interested 
in the dungeon, as I had never seen one before; but 
after we had half climbed and half slid down into 
it, I found that it differed very little from a deep, 
dark, windowless cellar. In this dungeon, says tra- 
dition, the unhappy Eleonore Christine, daughter of 
Christian IV, and her husband, Corfitz Ulfeldt, were 
confined while prisoners at Hammershuus. Ulfeldt 
had committed treason against his country; Eleo- 

68 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

nore Christine was merely guilty of loyalty to her 
husband. They were imprisoned at the castle just 
two years after the Swedish garrison sent over to 
iiold the island was forced to surrender to the 
doughty Bornholmers. Those were stirring times 
for little old Denmark. 

Having explored the dungeon and identified the 
various parts of the castle by means of the map in 
my guide book, we wandered around the outer walls. 
What was once a moat is now a pretty, deep, little 
dell, crossed by a gracefully-arched bridge of red 
brick. Below, and seaward, near the base of the 
cliffs, are several queer, wave-sculptured rocks. One 
of them, the Lions' Heads, is especially well named. 
Beyond these, far to the north, we detected the out- 
lines of the coast of Sweden. Bornholm, you see, is 
much nearer to Sweden than it is to any Danish terri- 

After leaving Hammershuus, we drove along the 
southeast coast to Ro, to see Helligdommen Klippen 
(Holy Cathedral Cliffs). As it was about fiive 
o'clock when we arrived at Ro, we first had supper 
under the trees, with coffee, piping hot, obtained 
just across the way. Then, by means of a winding 
stairway, we reached the base of the cliffs. Here 
was a little gasoline launch which took us up and 
down the coast to see the fantastic wave-worn rock, 
now and then puffing into the deep caves dug out by 
the breakers. In some places the cliffs look as if 
Mother Nature when in an angry mood had seized 
a mighty knife and slashed right and left, working 
havoc with the solid granite; here were long slices 
of rock; there were slender columns and spires 
standing alone in the water; and occasionally there 

Bornholm and the Bornholmers 69 

appeared a distinct variation of pattern, bearing 
resemblance to natural objects. Our guide in the 
launch made the most of these. "Look at the profile 
of the Bornholm damsel, formed by that mass of 
rocks," said he; and "There is St. Peter; can't you 
see his cross and keys?" — and so on. 

On every ledge of the cliffs where soil could find 
place were velvety mosses, delicate, plumy ferns, and 
flowers brightly blooming; gaily colored fish darted 
about in the water; and — most beautiful of all — a 
glorious sunset crowned and scene and the day with 
a blaze of orange and crimson and gold and rose 
which covered half of the sky and was reflected on 
the surface of the placid Baltic. 

Perhaps, as compared with the wild, majestic 
sweep of our Western scenery, all of this seems very 
miniature and very tame. But it is not fair to 
compare it with anything so different. Helligdom- 
men, when I saw it, had a charm all its own — like 
an English landscape. I shall never forget its 

It would have been very pleasant to spend the 
whole summer at Uncle Johannes', but duty called, 
and the time for my other visits was short; so I 
soon returned to Ronne, bound for the northeastern 
part of the island. The railroad journey from 
Ronne to Nexo was one of the drollest experiences 
which I have had in Europe. Generally speaking, 
there is not anything funny about a ride by train; — 
but there are railroads and railroads; and of her 
own particular variety little old Bornholm certainly 
has ^ very exclusive monopoly. The cars are very 
small, as if they were the half-grown children of 
American ones; and the trains are almost Incredibly 

70 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

leisurely. Positively, I believe that my train spent 
two-thirds of the time backing and switching and 
waiting at stations. During the remaining third it 
ambled and sauntered between stopping points; and 
upon finally reaching one, the locomotive gave a 
ridiculous, hysterical shriek, as if overcome by the 
prodigiousness of the feat which it had performed. 
But this toy train suits Bornholmers very well, for 
they have plenty of time; and it suited me, for it 
gave ample opportunity for studying the landscape. 
An American express would never do at all on that 
twenty-three-mile long island; it would be a giant 
in dwarf's quarters. The Ronne-to-Nexo line, which 
is the main railroad line in Bornholm, is not suffi- 
ciently long to enable a train of the American ex- 
press variety to assume normal speed with safety. 

From Nexo to Svaneke, whither I was bound, I 
had to go by post wagon. A post chaise is just a 
sort of rudimentary stage coach, and as I am ^n 
old stager — as you know — I immediately bethought 
me of a seat on top with the driver, and lost no time 
before asking for it. Some one else had got ahead 
of me, however, and I had to ride inside with two 
women and two children; hence, I had only an oc- 
casional and fragmentary view out of the dusty 
window in the rear. 

Svaneke, which is picturesquely situated upon the 
northeast coast of Bornholm, is a fishing town of 
about thirteen hundred inhabitants. It is, if pos- 
sible, quainter than Ronne. Its streets are crooked 
beyond belief; they dip and turn, zig-zag, and run 
In circles ; — at least, that is the impression which I 
gained from wandering helplessly around in them; 
for I never went out alone without becoming lost 

Bornholm and the Bornholmers 71 

and having to undergo the humiliation of inquiring 
the way to my destination. Another baffling charac- 
teristic of the place is that the houses are more com- 
pletely duplicates of one another than are those at 

On a particularly crooked street, near the edge of 
the town, are three of the typical Bornholm houses; 
all are low and box-shaped, with red-tiled roofs, and 
with small German windows, the wide sills of which 
are crowded with potted plants, beautifully growing 
and blooming. In these three houses live three 
aunts of mine, all of them sisters and all of them 
widows. To these aunts, my visit was an epoch- 
making event; I came as a delegate from my mother 
whom they had not seen for forty years. At a 
family congress held shortly after my arrival the 
time which I had to spare for Svaneke was carefully 
divided up, in order that each aunt might have a 
fair chance at her American niece; and in conse- 
quence of this treaty, the niece vibrated somewhat 
like an erratic pendulum between the three dear, 
quaint old homes. Breakfast at Tante Hulda's, 
luncheon at Tante Anna's, dinner at Tante Laura's, 
with one or more of the appertaining cousins present, 
— thus ran the schedule, with an occasional reversal 
or combination. Only the place where I was to have 
afternoon coffee was left unprovided for; I had that 
wherever I happened to be at coffee time. 

My nights, however, were spent with my oldest 
aunt, Anna, who lives in the middle of the row. All 
of her children have homes of their own, except 
the youngest, who has followed the call of the Viking 
and is away at sea. Her home is a perfect museum 
of souvenirs of him and his voyages; there are Jap- 

72 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

anese curios, tapa cloth from the South Seas, armo- 
dillo baskets, nautilus shells. South American para- 
keets, and I do not know what else. Imagine 
squawking parakeets in little old Bornholm I In its 
air of "foreignness," the interior of Xante Anna's 
house contrasted interestingly with the homes of my 
other two aunts, which are typical of Bornholm. 
But everything was interesting and charming and 
everything was wonderfully quiet and restful. I 
recommend Svaneke for all victims of nervous pros- 

One day, like Charles Lamb, I went cousin-hunt- 
ing out in the country, — but in the company of a 
cousin instead of a sister. We cycled, Dagmar and 
I; and started early and had a long, lovely day. 
The landscape in this part of the island is the most 
beautiful that I have seen since my arrival here. 
The poppy-and-cornflower-strewn grain was ripe, and 
here and there the harvesting had begun. Occa- 
sionally the whirr of a reaping machine was heard, 
but very frequently I noticed folk reaping and bind- 
ing by hand in primitive fashion. The men led, 
cutting the grain with their sickles; behind them 
came the women who bound it into sheaves, which 
they piled ready for the hauling. The colored 
dresses of the women contrasted brightly with the 
background of fields and gave the touch of perfec- 
tion to the picture. 

But the passing landscape was made up of much 
more than harvest fields and reapers. There was 
a rare variety. Patches of rosy clover and of 
alfalfa, with blossoms shading from pale amethyst 
to deep, dark purple — patronized by thousands of 
golden yellow butterflies — alternated with the fields 

Bornholm and the Bornholmers 73 

of wheat and barley, oats and rye already mentioned. 
Some of the fields were unfenced; others were in- 
closed by thick, green hedges, or by walls of unhewn 
stone, with at times a waste corner given over to 
purple heather. Here and there over the patches 
of pasture please imagine a few sleek dairy cows, 
and a few more plump sheep. Add trees to the 
panoramic picture — some casting broad, cool shad- 
ows across the finely-paved road, along which you 
cycle in imagination with me, others grouped here 
and there between us and the horizon — majestic 
oaks and beeches, and white-limbed birches, with 
dainty, fern-like leaves. 

And now put in the houses. Just coming into view 
on one side is a mossy, thatched-roofed gaard, with 
dazzling white walls partly concealed by clumps of 
trees; on the other side, a little nearer at hand, note 
a red brick building peeping forth from the cluster- 
ing foliage ; and yonder is a white one with red tiles 
substituted for thatch. As you cycle past, there will 
be a constant shifting and changing of styles and 
colors, according to whether the farms are new or 
old, small or large. Tuck into the panorama a few 
large windmills here and there, with long arms 
slowly and lazily grinding out Danish grist; and 
finally finish off your picture by adding an occasional 
church, at first just peeping its spire or tower over 
the rolling surface of the ground, but as you ap- 
proach looming large, in Lutheran dignity conscious 
of State support. 

We rode all day in the midst of this beautiful 
landscape, now and then making a cousinly call. And 
always, for the sake of the cousinship, these cousins 
welcomed their clanswoman from the Land of the 

74 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

Setting Sun; and everywhere they insisted that we 
partake of coffee, regardless of the amount of which 
we had already drunk; and always they accompanied 
us to the main road when we departed, remembered 
the "Hils hjemme" (Greet those at home for us) 
when the good-byes were said, and were waving a 
final farewell when we took a last look at the turn 
of the road. Verily, cousin-hunting in a foreign land 
may be a wondrous pleasant pastime — if the foreign 
land be an ancestral homeland. 

Near the end of our ride we came to Ostermarie 
Church, of the parish in which my mother lived as 
a child. And there in the church-yard were many 
old grave-stones with family names ; names that were 
familiar, but strange — when found there. The 
ancient church is in ruins, but twenty years ago a 
new one was built, after an old pattern, with a square 
tower topped off with a gable. A memorial tablet 
to Jens Kofoed, who helped save Bornholm for 
Denmark, has been carefully transferred from the 
old building to the new. 

Ostermarie represents one of two characteristic 
types of Bornholm church architecture. The other 
type which I have in mind is the rotunda. These 
rotunda churches are among the rare sights of Den- 
mark, and date from well back into the Middle Ages. 
Osterlars, the finest sample, is Ostermarie's near 
neighbor at the northwest. The main part of the 
building is a huge cylinder, capped with a cone- 
shaped roof. Attached to the outer walls, like 
barnacles, with little regard to symmetry or uni- 
formity, are a number of buttresses. The whole 
structure has a grotesque appearance, and is like 
nothing else I have ever seen, — except, perhaps, as 

Harvest Time in Bornholm 

Osterlars Church, Bornholm 

Bornholm and the Bornholmers 75 

regards form, the grass huts of the South Sea 
Islanders. But it is much more substantial than 
these; the walls are thick and heavy; for in the old 
fighting days the rotundas served as fortresses as 
well as houses of worship. 

The northeastern part of the island possesses 
various reminders of earlier days than those in 
which Osterlars was built. Among these are the 
sites of several burial mounds. During my mother's 
girlhood some of the mounds were leveled by bold 
farmers, unfearful of the hauntings of outraged 
ghosts ; and their contents — weapons, utensils, orna- 
ments, etc. — which the heathen Danes had buried 
with their dead, were brought to light. Some of 
the objects reached the museum at Copenhagen in 
safety; others, especially the ornaments of gold and 
silver, were melted down by the thrifty but short- 
sighted country people. The most famous mound 
of all was, however, carefully excavated by Danish 
archaeologists. This was on the large farm called 
Store Bakkegaard, not far from my mother's old 

Most of the country people realized that the 
mounds were prehistoric graves; and some of the 
farmers, for superstitious reasons, refrained from 
leveling them. As you may imagine, many ghost 
stories grew up around these — stories of mysterious 
lights which appeared and disappeared in the trees 
on top of one of them; of a monstrous three-legged 
cat which yowled from another; of a surpassingly 
beautiful maiden with incredibly long golden locks 
who haunted a third. They were "spooky" land- 
marks, my mother said — places past which the school 
children hurried with bated breath in the early twi- 

76 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

light of the short winter days. 

In my mother's childhood also many believed in 
witches and wizards, who were able to work destruc- 
tion to their enemies, and against whom one must be 
on one's guard; and of "wise men" and "wise 
women," beneficent variations of the witch and 
wizard class, to whom one went with one's troubles, 
of whatever nature. Was a Bornholmer afflicted 
with boils or ringworm, warts or "fits," which failed 
to yield to home remedies, if he was superstitious — 
as he often was — -he would ignore medical advice 
and consult a "wise" person, frequently with satis- 
factory results. A lost sheep or a lost child, a guilty 
conscience or suspected disloyalty on the part of 
a lass or a lover — all of these were cases which called 
for the services of the "wise." With the spread of 
scientific knowledge, however, knowing ones, good 
and evil, tended to lose prestige, and now, so far 
as I have been able to learn, they are no more numer- 
ous in Bornholm than elsewhere; the "backwoods" 
in the Baltic is becoming as hard-headed and skepti- 
cal as the remainder of the world. 

On my return from Svaneke to Nex5 I rode on the 
high seat with the driver; and as the day was fine 
and the driver was affable it seemed almost as if my 
old staging days had returned. One has such a 
top-of-the-world feeling when on the driver's seat 
of a stage coach — even if the coach be only a post 
wagon. To the right hand was a Bornholm land- 
scape such as I have tried to describe; to the left 
was the Baltic, edged by rocky cHffs, and dotted here 
and there with the white or brown sail of a fishing 

A few miles beyond Nexo I stopped off to visit 

Bornholm and the Bornholmers 77 

my cousin Thorwald, who lives on a large gaard 
with quadrangular buildings of brick, arranged on 
the same principle as Barquist, only on a larger and 
more elaborate scale. While here, for the first 
time — I hope it was the first time — I disgraced my 
clan. This is how it happened. When I arrived, 
Christine, my cousin's wife, was up to her eyebrows 
in preparations for a birthday party for their little 
girl; and promptly after my arrival the cook fell ill. 
It was evident that a crisis was at hand, which I 
determined to relieve. The intricacies of Danish 
cookery are quite beyond me, so I knew enough to 
leave that to Christine; and I cast about me for 
other means of helpfulness. As luck would have 
it, I saw a row of milk pails near the kitchen door. 
Now, as you know, I was not reared on the Far 
Western frontier for nothing; the mysteries of 
bridge whist and the tango to me are mysteries in- 
deed, but I can milk a cow. 

As the inspiration seized me, as "promptly I seized 
a pail and went forth to relieve the birthday party 
crisis. The cows were gentle ; I milked two, and re- 
turned in triumph with the brimming pail. I ac- 
knowledge that I had had some misgivings with 
reference to just how my particular form of aid 
would be regarded; but I was not prepared for the 
sensation which my performance created. As I ap- 
proached the house, I met one of the maids who was 
starting out to milk. Upon seeing me, she rushed 
into the house exclaiming, "De fremmede dame har 
malkede koerene ! De fremmede dame har 
malkede koerene!" And the awful tidings spread. 

Since Thorwald is not only a wealthy farmer but 
— what is vastly more important — is also an officer 

78 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

in the Danish army, Christine has a tremendous 
amount of dignity to maintain. When she learned 
what I had done, she stood for a moment in petrified 
astonishment, and then burst forth, "You have 
milked the cows ! What will my friends say ! What 
will my friends say!" And then she left the room, 
utterly humiliated by the conduct of her husband's 
low-bred cousin. I am certain that she swore the 
maids to secrecy, lest my exploit get abroad and 
she lose caste. 

A scrap of consolation was offered to me, how- 
ever, by Christine's cousin, who was also a visitor 
at the house. She, not being related to me, could 
afford to be amused as well as scandalized. After 
I had stoutly aired my views, this cousin told of a 
Danish high-school teacher — a woman of phenom- 
enal strength of mind — who had not only shocked the 
whole community by milking a cow, but subsequently 
had shamelessly announced that were she the queen 
she would milk cows if she felt like doing so ! Un- 
fortunately, with all of her charm, little old Born- 
holm is in some ways very conservative and very 
aristocratic; there is much talk of "fine folk"; and 
her aristocracy is still determined to a considerable 
degree by the mediaeval qualifications of position and 
wealth, rather than by intellect and character. She 
is not so different from my own land, however; for 
there are plenty of Americans who would sympa- 
thize with Cousin Christine's indignation over my 
plebeian performance. 

Lest you be left with the impression, however, that 
the "pearl of the Baltic" is far more backwoodsy 
and conservative than is a, fact, I wish to assure 
you before leaving it that Bornholm is, in many 

Bornholm and the Bornholmers 79 

ways, exceedingly progressive. It must be, since it 
is a part of Denmark, which is in the front rank of 
the progressives of Europe. The farmers' telephone 
system, for instance, is well established on the island, 
and is well patronized; rural mail delivery also 
exists, the postmen generally cycling over the smooth 
roads. Bornholm's educational system is excellent; 
you would be astonished at the subjects, besides 
English, which are included even in the grammar 
school course. And I must acknowledge — though 
as an American school teacher I am somewhat 
ashamed to — that the teaching is more thorough 
than in our land; the Danish children seem to 
retain and make practical use of what they learn, 
as few American children do. The Bornholmers 
are intelligent too, though isolated; they read and 
they think; all seem to make at least one trip to 
Copenhagen during a lifetime, and many visit the 
capital quite frequently. Also, Socialism gives evi- 
dence of being fairly well rooted in the island, where 
it bids fair in future to play havoc with time-honored 
aristocratic ideals. 

Bornholm conservatism is in a sense a modified 
local patriotism; for the Bornholmers are intensely 
attached to their mid-Baltic home, — a fact, I pre- 
sume, largely due to their isolation and to the con- 
sequent necessity, to a considerable degree, for their 
fighting their own battles in times past. Their love 
for the beautiful island naturally makes them loath 
to change the old for the new, unless they see a 
good reason for so doing. A cousin who is a 
fiercely loyal Bornholmer is a good illustration of 
this. One day I asked her the Danish word for 
"birch" and she replied, "The Copenhagen Danish 

8o Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

is hirk; the Bornholm Danish is hurck. I pronounce 
it burck, for / am a Bornholmer." The Danish 
spoken in Copenhagen is generally considered the 
best, and is charming to the ear; in my opinion, it 
has a dignity which French lacks, and a beauty of 
sound foreign to German. The Bornholm dialect, 
on the other hand, is a broad drawl which is un- 
qualifiedly ugly. 

It must be recognized, too, that Bornholm pos- 
sesses virtues which many centrally-located places 
lack. Among the population of more than forty 
thousand serious crimes are almost unknown. The 
people are friendly and honest; they practice the 
Golden Rule pretty faithfully. I was impressed with 
this fact while in Svaneke. We were going away 
to spend the evening, and I, being the last out, pro- 
ceeded to lock the door. "Never mind to lock the 
door," said Tante Anna; "just close it. There 
are no thieves on Bornholm." Later, fearful lest 
she had exaggerated the honesty of the island, she 
discussed the matter with Tante Hulda; and finally 
they remembered that some years before a man in 
Ronne had been convicted of stealing a few kroners' 
worth of something — I have forgotten what. 

I am writing these final lines aboard Omen, 
sitting on a stool in the cabin with my writing pad 
on my knee; for I am outward bound from Born- 
holm. All of my Ronne relatives came to the boat 
and saw me off with "Hils hjemmes" and repeat- 
edly waved good-byes. I was just on deck to take 
a last look. Ah, when I forget thee, Bornholm ! 
— My nearest cabin mate is a girl from the Faroes, 
who is taking a great armful of purple heather home 
with her. The Faroes, you know, are a part of Den- 

Bornholm and the Bornholmers 8i 

mark. An old Norse dialect is the vernacular, but 
Danish is taught in the schools, and my cabin mate, 
like most natives, speaks it. Hence, we do not have 
to resort to a deaf-mute show in order to make our- 
selves understood. The girl is stirring in her berth. 
I fear that the light disturbs her, so I must put it 
out. As the Bornholmers say, "Farvel saa laenge" 
— Good-bye for the present. 


an introduction to sweden : lund, helsingborg, 


Gothenburg, Sweden, 

August 15, 191 — 
My dear Cynthia: 

As you see, I am at last in the land of the Swede, 
— a land even less known to Americans than is Den- 
mark, — which is saying considerable. The sum 
total of information which most Americans possess 
about Sweden seems to be that Swedish girls make 
good cooks. Consequently, they appear to look 
upon all Swedish women as potential American 
"servant girls." To be sure, in view of the fact 
that my ancestral roots sink deep in Swedish soil, I 
deserve no credit for such knowledge of things 
Swedish as I have; and I claim none. But since 
my arrival here I have been acquiring more knowl- 
edge, and I propose to thrust some of it upon you; 
for I have no reason to believe that you possess any 
superfluous information upon the subject; and, be- 
sides, it is impossible to write from Sweden without 
writing about Sweden. 

Though Lund was my first definite goal in the 
Swedish land, I went there via Malmo, a commer- 
cial town on the sea coast, which I reached after 
about an hour's sailing from Copenhagen. So far 


An Introduction to Sweden 83 

as I have been able to learn, Malmo's chief claim 
to historic glory is the fact that it was here, in 1533, 
that Christian Petersen, the "Father of Danish lit- 
erature," set up the first printing press in Denmark. 
For the province in which Malmo and Lund are 
situated, as well as other provinces in southern 
Sweden, was at that time a possession of Denmark, 
which had ruled over it since the days of Canute 
the Great. But in the middle of the seventeenth 
century, by the treaty of Roskilde, the whole south- 
ern end of the peninsula again came under control of 
Sweden, which has possessed it ever since. And this 
is well, for, geographically and geologically, the ter- 
ritory is Swedish. However, its long exile under 
Danish dominion has prevented it from fully acquir- 
ing Swedish characteristics — in so far as Sweden has 
characteristics different from the other Scandinavian 
lands. Hence, in spite of the customs inspection, and 
in spite of the fact that a blue flag with a yellow 
cross was in evidence instead of Dannebrog, it was 
difficult for me to realize that I was in a new land. 
To me, Lund is an attractive place ; the house of 
Tegner, Sweden's greatest poet is there; and there 
also are one of the two Swedish universities, and a 
fine old cathedral. Tegner, you should remember 
as the author of "The Children of the Lord's Sup- 
per," so beautifully translated by our own Long- 
fellow. "Fritjof's Saga," Tegner's greatest work, 
is not so well known in America, though a large 
number of English translations exist; but I have 
been fond of it for years. From it, Longfellow 
got many a valuable hint for his "Evangeline." Just 
read the following description of Fritjof's banquet- 
ing hall from the saga, and then tell me whether it 

84 Const?! Hunting in Scandinavia 

does not forcibly remind you of Longfellow's poem. 

"Covered with straw was the floor, and upon a 
walled hearth in the center, 

Constantly burned, warm and cheerful, a fire, while 
down the wide chimney 

Twinkling stars, heavenly friends, glanced upon 
guest and hall, quite unforbidden. 

Studded with nails were the walls, and upon them 
were hanging 

Helmets and coats-of-mail closely together; also 
between them 

Here and there flashed a sword, like a meteor shoot- 
ing at evening. 

''Brighter than helmet or sword were the sparkling 

shields ranged round the chamber; 
Bright as the face of the sun were they, clear as the 

moon's disc of silver. 
Oft as the horns needed filling there passed round 

the table a maiden ; 
Modestly blushing she cast down her eyes, her 

beautiful image 
Mirrored appeared in the shields, and gladdened 

the heart of each warrior." 

In one of Lund's narrow streets, squeezed tightly 
between other buildings, is the box-shaped house 
with German windows and tiled roof in which 
Tegner lived from 1813 to 1826, while he was pro- 
fessor in the university. Two of the rooms formerly 
occupied by him and his family are now preserved 
as a museum in his memory. And these rooms pre- 
sented a real Tegner personality to me, for many 

An Introduction to Sweden 85 

of the quaint belongings within are things which 
came under the poet's actual touch and eye, and 
which preserve still some fragment of individuality, 
though crowded together now in museum fashion. 
In the old family dining room are many busts and 
portraits of Tegner; also a screen made by his 
children; and two show cases, one of which contains 
many letters and manuscripts left by him, and the 
other, his spectacles and paper knife, and other 
objects which he once owned. A large book-case 
displays the many editions in which his writings have 
been given to the world. The walls of the other 
room are pretty well covered with portraits of 
celebrated contemporaries of the poet: men in plain 
lay clothes, men in clerical frocks, men with military 
stars and bars. In the second room are also the 
desk, study lamp and chairs which Tegner used; 
and a queer old "bridal stool" somewhat resembling 
a sofa — from the receptacle under the seat of which 
the woman in charge pulled a bridal quilt, covered 
with embroidered silk. 

In Tegner Place, a square shaded by great, char- 
acterful old trees, is also a pleasing memorial of the 
professor-poet. It is a fine bronze statue which rep- 
resents him — very appropriately, since in his great- 
est writings he sings of Scandinavia's pagan past — 
as leaning against a large rune stone. The square 
adjoins the university. 

Lund University was founded about two hundred 
and fifty years ago ; but the present building, in hand- 
some classical-Renaissance style, is quite new. In- 
side, also, everything is spick and span, cosy, and 
generally harmonious. The ceiling of the entrance 
hall is supported by fine marble pillars, the walls 

86 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

are pleasingly tinted, and here and there in the class 
rooms are paintings by Scandinavian artists. The 
student body consists of about a thousand men and 
women. As in the other Scandinavian universities, 
the women as well as the men wear a black and 
white cap, with a button of the national colors in 
front. The common emblem worn by the students 
may be taken as symbolizing the equality of oppor- 
tunity enjoyed at the universities by the women and 
men alike. The women of Lund University, unlike the 
women in many co-educational institutions in other 
parts of Europe, are not merely tolerated; they 
belong; they have equal rights there with their 
brothers; they attend classes, receive degrees, and 
come and go with a quiet air of independence and 
dignity which carries with it no apology for exist- 

The cathedral of Lund is a grand old romanesque 
pile — the finest of the sort in Scandinavia — dating 
from the twelfth century. The old gray stone walls 
and the great square twin towers give it an appear- 
ance both venerable and majestic, which attracted me 
very much. A crowd of tourists had gathered to 
view the building; and presently a wide-awake look- 
ing woman, shirt-waisted and straw-sailor-hatted, 
came and showed us through it. On the restored 
brick and plaster walls are many tablets — some more 
than three centuries old — erected to the memory of 
past and gone Scandinavians. The pulpit dates 
from 1592, and is of black marble and alabaster, 
beautifully worked — but suggestive of death and 
mourning. Surrounding the pulpit are arranged the 
coats-of-arms of the nobles who gave it to the 
cathedral. The choir stalls, or monk stools, as our 

An Introduction to Sweden 87 

guide called them, are more ancient than the pulpit. 
They are very quaint, with grotesque, grinning faces 
carved on the arms. Above the backs of the stools 
are scenes from the Bible: in one Jehovah is repre- 
sented as a very round-faced young man in the act 
of creating the earth; in another, he is bringing the 
sun into being; in a third, he is creating the beasts 
of the field and the fowls of the air. Surely the 
mediaeval wood-workers did not pursue their labors 
with very deep seriousness or reverence; they must 
have given their sense of humor play while they 
wrought the funny clumsy figures. 

But the cathedral is especially famous for its 
crypt. This is more than one hundred and twenty 
feet long and is about one-fourth as wide. Twenty 
three heavy pillars support the round arches, which 
in turn bear up the ceiling. This great space is 
dimly lighted by ten small windows. In the right 
arm of the crypt is an old well with a circular stone 
curbing, upon which, long centuries ago, some humor- 
ist cut quaint, satirical figures and inscriptions. Down 
in the crypt, long before the Reformation, Roman 
Catholic monks said their prayers and kept their 
fasts. Their cells are still in the walls. Down there, 
too, under the floor, are buried many ecclesiastical 
worthies, including the bishops of Lund who once 
held under their dominion all of the churches of 
Sweden. Also, and finally, the giant Finn and his 
family are prisoners in the ancient room beneath 
the cathedral — in bas-relief on the everlasting stone. 
And I must confess that I was more interested in 
the frivolous story of the ill-fated Finn than in all 
of the holy monks and domineering bishops. 

Our cicerone told us the story, about in this wise : 

88 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

In the year 1080 the good Saint Lawrence set the 
giant Finn to work to construct the cathedral. Since 
it was to be a mighty building, a giant's labor was 
needed to construct it. St. Lawrence, however, 
lacked foresight, and failed to have a contract signed 
before the work began. Consequently, the giant 
had him at his mercy when the task was completed. 
Finn demanded an exorbitant price for his services 
— the sun and the moon, or the eyes of the imprac- 
tical saint. The only chance of escape which St. 
Lawrence had was to guess the name of the builder; 
failing to do that, out would go his eyes, for, ob- 
viously, the sun and the moon were beyond his 
reach. But giants, as you know, are stupid, and the 
Finn family was no exception. When the price was 
almost within their grasp, Mrs. Finn, while croon- 
ing her baby to sleep, from force of habit mentioned 
her husband's name in the song. — Presumably the 
lullaby was the ancestor of the "Father-will-come- 
to-thee-soon" one. — That minute the game was up; 
all was lost. For St. Lawrence, who was snooping 
around, overheard the builder's name. 

In the despair and rage consequent upon their 
failure, the Finns tried to pull down the church, evi- 
dently — like Samson at Gaza — welcoming suicide 
in the general destruction. However, St. Lawrence, 
who now had the upper hand, prevented, and dis- 
posed of them for good by turning them into stone. 
There they are even unto this day, a part of the 
pillars supporting the great vault of the crypt. But, 
in my opinion, a dastardly crime is also recorded 
against St. Lawrence by the carvings on the two 
pillars ; for the innocent was made to suffer with the 
guilty; the little Finn baby was petrified with its 

An Introduction to Sweden 89 

parents. There is the poor, helpless Infant on the 
column with his mother, flattened out in pitiless bas- 
relief, to the eternal disgrace of the Church. Here 
endeth the story of the bas-reliefs on the pillars of 
the crypt. He that hath creduHty to believe let him 

Helsingborg was my second stop in the land of the 
Swede. You will find Helsingborg on the map where 
southwestern Sweden almost touches Denmark. 
Indeed, here the Sound is only a little more than 
two miles wide, so it is not at all difficult to under- 
stand why in centuries past Swede and Dane fought 
so many and such bloody battles over the control 
of the commerce which passed through this impor- 
tant gateway. The town has only about thirty 
thousand inhabitants, but it offered me a number of 
objects of interest. On the quay was a tablet com- 
memorating the landing of the Frenchman, Marshal 
Bernadotte, on October 22, 18 10, when he came 
to Sweden as heir of the childless Charles XITI, 
and founder of the present royal Swedish house. 
Farther on was a statue of Count Stenbock, the 
warrior who saved southern Sweden from recapture 
by the Danes during the Swedish reverses suffered 
under Charles XII. 

But of all the attractions offered by Helsingborg 
the palm should go either to Swedish hard bread 
or to Karnan— preferably, I suppose, to the latter; 
for Sweden has only one Karnan while hard bread 
may be obtained anywhere within her borders. It 
happened, however, that I had somehow missed my 
chance at hard bread in Lund, so I shall always asso- 
ciate the gustatory pleasure obtained from it with 
this particular Swedish town. As its name implies, 

90 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

the bread is hard; it is also dry and brittle and 
brown, for it is made of rye meal and is baked in 
thin, round cakes about as large as a dinner plate. 
On the tables in the open-air cafe where I had 
luncheon were great piles of this delectable morsel. 
This bread, spread with slightly-salted Swedish but- 
ter and partaken of with coffee such as the Scandi- 
navians know how to make, supplies a luncheon lit 
for the gods of Scandinavia. Nectar and ambrosia, 
I am persuaded, would take only second prize in any 
international exposition. Frankly, however, Cynthia, 
I fear that you would vote for the fare of the Greek 
gods, in preference. 

Since the cafe in which I first partook of Swedish 
hard bread was very near to Karnan, where I went 
immediately afterward, I also associate the bread 
with Karnan. This latter is not edible, though from 
association and sound it may seem so. Yet Karnan 
is a "kernel" — the kernel or core of a Swedish fort- 
ress built something like six hundred years ago. Its 
actual date of foundation is lost in the past. Around 
it were once heavy battlemented walls and towers, 
all of which played a part in the bloody struggles 
of the centuries. But to modern times there de- 
scended only the great square central building, dis- 
mantled and falling into ruins — until recently re- 
stored. The restoration has transformed the frag- 
ment of the ancient fortress into a handsome red 
brick observation tower, the newest of the new, from 
the top of which floats the flag of Sweden. The ap- 
proach up the hill to Karnan is a right royal one, 
and is very fitly named for the good King Oscar. 
After ascending a series of broad, shallow stair- 
cases and passing under three arches, each more 

An Introduction to Sweden 91 

majestic than the preceding, I reached the door of 
the tower. Then there were nearly one hundred 
and fifty steps of a spiral staircase to climb before 
reaching the platform under the sky blue flag with 
its golden cross. But the view from there was well 
worth a much harder climb. Do not miss it if ever 
the JVanderlust should carry you to the land of the 

Helsingborg, itself, as I learned as a result of my 
climb, is a very pretty town with bright, clean build- 
ings, magnificently situated upon the shores of the 
Sound through which many ships were passing. 
Below me, up and down the clean, well-paved streets 
moved the busy Swedes, intent upon their daily tasks. 
But as it was a clear day I also secured a fine sweep 
of the surrounding Swedish landscape, and — most 
interesting of all — had a clear view of the nearest 
corner of Denmark, Helsingor, as the Danes call 
it, but the Elsinore of Hamlet to all English-speak- 
ing peoples. Helsingor looked less than a good 
stone's throw away. Its largest buildings were 
plainly visible; and Kronborg Castle, which guards 
the Sound in behalf of the Danes, loomed up in the 
foreground, grand and majestic. I shall be certain 
to see it nearer on my return to Denmark. 

After a day and a night in Helsingborg I left 
by rail for Gothenburg — or Goteborg, as known 
to the Swedes. The landscape through which I 
journeyed is more rolling than that around Lund; 
and it is exceedingly stony. In one little valley which 
we crossed the stones were piled up into walls, evi- 
dently not so much for the purpose of forming fences 
as to clear the soil. Indeed, as it was, these fences 
covered a large portion of the ground. It was har- 

92 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

vest time in Sweden; and kerchiefed women were 
working with the men in the fields, binding and piling 
the sheaves. The farm houses here were quite differ- 
ent from those in Denmark, both as regards material 
and style of architecture. The gaard arrangement 
was exceptional; instead, the buildings, which are 
generally of wood, painted dark red, with white 
trimmings, were unconnected, and frequently ar- 
ranged parallel to each other. 

As we neared Gothenburg the scenery improved; 
the rolling territory with its stones and stone walls 
gave place to a more hilly landscape with great 
rugged rocks and beautiful trees. On entering the 
town we passed Gota Lejon Fort, which stands on 
the summit of a hill. It is a large, round tower — 
very old but recently restored — built with exceed- 
ingly thick stone walls. It is surmounted by a ram- 
pant bronze lion wearing a golden crown and bear- 
ing a sword; hence the name. The mate of this 
fortress, Kronan, which is now a military museum, 
is topped off with a golden crown. Kronan is on a 
hill nearer the heart of the city, and is reached by 
a stairway of about two hundred steps. 

A large bronze statue of Gustav Adolf — no true 
Swede would use the Latin form in these days — has 
the place of honor in the main public square. This 
Protestant warrior king was the founder of the 
town; — or, more strictly speaking, the inviter of the 
founders. Under his direction and at his invitation 
It was settled by Dutch people who were commer- 
cially inclined and saw great possibilities in a city 
built at the mouth of the Gotha River. Gothenburg 
has prospered since its foundation and now ranks 
second in size to Stockholm; but it still bears traces 

An Introductiou to Sweden 93 

of its origin, in the form of the broad streets and 
the canals suggestive of Holland. Another peculiar- 
ity of the town is the numerous staircases for ascend- 
ing and descending the granite hills. These staired 
streets are a great boon to pedestrians, who have 
the complete monopoly of them. 

Slottsskogen, Gothenburg's natural park, is on 
high ground outside of the city. It is a large woodsy 
stretch, with here and there great patches of purple 
heather, through which granite boulders peep. In 
the pretty, tree-rimmed lakes black and white swans 
were sailing, and in an inclosure were soft-eyed deer. 
From a cream-colored stone observation tower on 
the highest point in the park I secured a fine view. 
To the west was the broad mouth of the Gotha 
into which were steaming European merchant ships ; 
for this burg on the Gotha is far-famed for its man- 
ufactures and its commerce. On to the northeast, 
like a silver-blue ribbon, the river curved, bearing 
other vessels bound for Stockholm, via the Gotha 

I cannot leave Gothenburg without telling you 
about the "automat" and its possibilities. In Copen- 
hagen I had noticed tempting-looking buildings con- 
spicuously labeled "Automat," but, fearing that they 
might be a new variety of "gilded halls of sin," care- 
fully avoided them. In Gothenburg yesterday, how- 
ever, I saw a tremendously respectable-appearing 
woman, accompanied by a little girl, come out of an 
automat, and, thoroughly convinced that there was 
nothing immoral about the place, I went in to explore. 
An automat, Cynthia, is an automatic restaurant, 
non-alcoholic and immaculately respectable; it is the 
cafeteria idea carried to its logical conclusion. I have 

94 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

never seen automats in our own land; but they are 
wonderfully convenient, and do away with that sur- 
vival of mediaeval highway robbery called "tipping.'* 
They are operated on the money-in-the-slot and the 
touch-the-button principle. Taking a meal in one 
of them is an interesting performance, partaking 
somewhat of the qualities of an adventure. 

In one wall of the dining room are various slots 
and electric buttons, slides and faucet-like spouts, 
all properly labeled. Perhaps you would like a cup 
of cocoa. If so, place a cup and saucer, from the 
table near at hand, under the proper spout, drop a 
five-ore piece into the neighboring slot, and immedi- 
ately cocoa will gush forth into your cup, stopping at 
just the right degree of fullness. The cocoa will be 
as good as the best and will cost less than two cents 
in American money. You will want a sandwich 
to eat with your cocoa, I am sure. There are almost 
as many kinds of sandwiches in Scandinavia as there 
are foods; and all are good. A veritable rainbow 
array of them is on exhibition in a round glass case 
divided into compartments. Rotate the case until 
the dish containing the variety which you would like 
most to sample is before the little metal door, drop 
your five-ore piece into the slot, and the door will 
open and out will slide the desired dish. You can 
supply yourself with the most delicious little cakes 
and tarts in the same way. Should you want some- 
thing hot, roast beef and browned potatoes, for in- 
stance, or lamb stew, you will have to return to the 
wall. Put your money in the slot, press the button, 
and as soon as ever it can be dished up your order 
will come out through the side, piping hot and 
mighty good. Carry your spoils to one of the little 

An Introduction to Sweden 95 

tables, which are set as in a cafeteria, but supplied 
with hard bread in addition; help yourself to knife, 
fork and spoon and paper napkin from the side table ; 
and — fall to. 

You are convinced by this time, I presume, that I 
have become a perfect gourmand. Perhaps I have; 
but you would be too, under the same circumstances. 
I marvel no longer that the Scandinavians eat five 
times a day. And I hope that Stockholm for which 
I depart this morning is well supplied with automats. 
I shall write you from there. Meanwhile, as the 
Swedes say, "Adjo ! Adjo!" 


journeying across sweden; stockholm 

Stockholm, Sweden, 

August 20, 191 — 
My dear Cynthia: 

I do not mind admitting now that I was distinctly 
disappointed with my first glimpses of the Swedish 
landscape. You probably noticed that in my last 
letter I 'demned it by faint praise.' But since writ- 
ing that letter I have crossed the peninsula from 
Gothenburg to Stockholm, and I have found that 
— at least so far as the eye will reach on either side 
of the railroad track — Sweden is far more beautiful 
than I had ever dreamed. It was such a satisfac- 
tion to the Swedish half of me to learn that. 

The country was woodsy and rolling and rocky 
all the way; and it was more than that. As we 
journeyed, conifers, particularly fir and pine, were 
added to the dainty white-limbed birches and the 
oaks. Between Lakes Vennern and Vettern for 
many miles we passed through dense forests, largely 
evergreens. The trees pressed closely in on both 
sides of the track, so that I could almost touch then- 
plumy green arms with my hand. There were 
plenty of rocks, too, but in the form of sightly crags 
or rugged bluffs which were really a contribution to 
the picture. Here and there were houses, mostly 


Journeying Across Sweden; Stockholm 97 

the typical dark red with white trimmings, which 
added a pleasant bit of color, peeping from be- 
tween the openings in the forests, or well exposed 
and surrounded by fields. In some of the fields were 
men plowing with teams of oxen; in others were 
sheaves of rye or oats stuck on long, pointed stakes 
to dry. These spitted sheaves in some cases bore 
ghostly, grotesque resemblance to human beings. 
The railroad stations were mostly of red brick, with 
neat grounds frequently planted to flowers. 

I have not yet mentioned the water. That de- 
serves a paragraph by itself. If I had not already 
given you to understand that between Gothenburg 
and Stockholm there are houses and fields and forests 
and crags, I should be tempted to state that there 
is water everywhere. While this is not strictly 
true, water is astonishingly plentiful and is all mixed 
up with everything else. It has been said that when, 
in the act of creation, Jehovah parted the water from 
the land, he forgot Sweden. It certainly looks as 
if someone had forgotten. There are ditches be- 
tween the fields to draw off the water; and lakes, 
large and small, from which brimming rivers flow, 
are scattered about in the most extravagant manner. 
Near Stockholm the lakes are closer together than 
at the Gothenburg end of the line. With their 
framing of gray, rocky bluffs and tall, dark forests 
reflected on their silvery surfaces, occasionally dotted 
with water lilies in full bloom, these lakes are charm- 
ing indeed. Swedes have been fond of water since 
Viking times, you know. And last Friday they 
seemed to be enjoying their lakes to the full; some 
were swimming, and splashing and diving, like genu- 
ine amphibians; others were in boats — proud little 

98 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

steamers which made the reflected landscape tremble 
and quiver as they puffed and snorted about with a 
self-important air, and simple rowboats which glided 
modestly over the mirrored landscape. The train 
grazed the margin of one lake in which was a boat- 
load of laughing white-kerchiefed girls, rowed by a 
brown-armed young man, laughing, too. They were 
gathering pond lilies. 

As the train entered the city by way of a bridge 
across the Gotha Canal, we noted a little Gothen- 
burg steamer making its way between the green 
banks. It had taken about forty-eight hours longer 
than we to make the trip to the capital. But the 
trip by canal is a most delightful one, I have been 

When I used the pronoun we in the foregoing, I 
did not have in mind the sum total of passengers 
who traveled in the same train with me from Gothen- 
burg to Stockholm, but rather a woman who occu- 
pied the same compartment as I, on the train. 

My lady, Froken Nordstern — which, being inter- 
preted, means Miss North Star — boarded the train 
at Gothenburg. Her air told me on the instant that 
she was a kindred spirit, so I responded as cordially 
as possible to her pleasant "God morgon." After 
that it was easy to find an excuse for conversation. 
I soon found that the froken was wide-awake and 
interested in the best things of the present, and zeal- 
ous to contribute her share to the onward and up- 
ward progress of humanity. She spoke English very 
well; therefore, with my mongrel Scandinavian — 
which she was so good as to call Swedish — we had 
ample linguistic media for the expression of our 

Journeying Across Sweden; Stockholm 99 

We had exchanged remarks upon the subject of 
Gothenburg, where she is at the head of a small 
business house, and had branched out slightly in 
other directions, when she suddenly turned to me and 
announced that she would like to ask some rather 
personal questions. As I liked her, I replied that 
I was willing, and she proceeded. 

Was I a vegetarian? 

Theoretically, I stated, I was; the thought of 
devouring my fellow animals for food was abhorrent 
to me; but actually I was carnivorous in my habits 
— a piece of inconsistency made possible by dwarfed 
powers of imagination. 

Was I interested in the peace movement? 


Did I belong to some organization working to 
banish from the earth the possibility of nation tak- 
ing up arms against nation? 

No; but I was a teacher of history, and I never 
lost an opportunity to point out the superiority of 
plowshares to swords and pruning hooks to spears. 

Why didn't I belong to a peace society? Did I 
not think that I could be more useful to the cause 
of peace if I belonged to an organization? 

I had never given the matter serious thought, I 

Would I join a peace organization when I returned 
to my own country? 

Yes; and I was grateful for the jolt. 

My North Star lady now looked more hopeful. 
Lastly, did I believe in equal suffrage? 

Here was my chance to come out strong. I was 
born a suffragist, I declared. 

Froken Nordstern grasped my hand and gave it 

lOO Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

a hearty squeeze of comradeship. The last answer 
evidently counted at least fifty per cent. I judge 
that I passed the examination with about B-|-. 

After that we got on famously. The f roken gave 
an interesting account of what the Scandinavian 
people — -the very great grandchildren of the warlike 
old Vikings — were doing to effect permanent peace 
and good will among the nations ; and they are doing 
much, considering their numbers. Later in the sum- 
mer she expected to attend the Scandinavian peace 
congress to be held in Christiania. It would be 
pleasant, she said, if I could spare the time to attend. 
It would, indeed, said I. And then I took the oppor- 
tunity to express the gratification and relief which I 
had felt that no Scandinavian blood had been shed 
when Norway separated from Sweden in 1905. 
Characteristically, after this was spoken, it occurred 
to me that I might be skating on pretty thin ice ; but 
my pacifist friend showed her breadth of mind by 
promptly and warmly expressing not only her sym- 
pathy with my view but also good-will and best 
wishes for Norway, adding, however, that she was 
a loyal Swede. 

But equal suffrage was her dearest interest, for 
she believed that it would greatly increase the weight 
of the women's wishes in connection with other re- 
forms ; and we talked long upon the subject. Iceland, 
Finland and Norway had full suffrage, she pointed 
out; Danish women could vote on many questions; 
the women of Sweden had had municipal suffrage 
since 1862, and the lower house of the Swedish par- 
liament had recently passed the bill giving women 
full suffrage. King Gustav had shown his sympathy 
towards the reform. The delay was due merely to 

Journeying Across Sweden; Stockholm loi 

the conservative upper house. But Scandinavia, she 
declared, was easily leading Europe in the emanci- 
pation of women. This I knew to be a fact; I had 
swelled with pride over Scandinavia's progress in 
this regard long before touching Scandinavian soil. 
But I did not know, until Froken Nordstern told me, 
that Fredrika Bremer, the Swedish novelist whose 
books I long have loved, was a pioneer in the move- 
ment. Swedish women owe much to Miss Bremer, 
and in token of this, the great national organization 
for the enfranchisement and social betterment of 
women was named the Fredrika Bremer Associa- 

If you secure a chance to read Selma Lagerlof's 
"Ma'mselle Fredrika," Cynthia, do not let it pass. 
The story is in the collection entitled "Invisible 
Links." My froken had a copy of the volume with 
her and took pleasure in reading over again with me 
the charming, mystical tribute of Miss Lagerlof, in 
behalf of Sweden's "bachelor women," to the serv- 
ices of Miss Bremer. The story was new to me, but 
it is certainly one of the finest that Selma Lagerlof 
has produced. 

We talked also of Ellen Key. I suppose that she 
is best known in the United States by her book on 
"The Century of the Child," which is an attempt to 
educate parents up to a proper sense of their duty 
to their children; for Miss Key believes that the 
education of parents is of far more importance than 
the education of children. But her books, "The 
Woman Movement," "Love and Marriage," etc., 
have received considerable American attention, as 
you probably know. She differs from most femin- 
ists in that she constantly emphasizes the mother qual- 

I02 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

ity of woman as well as her humanity. In this, I 
think, she performs a great service. However, there 
seems little doubt but that Ellen Key's radical views 
upon love and marriage have contributed much to- 
wards giving the word "feminist" an uncomplimen- 
tary connotation. My North Star lady was gratified 
to learn that I was not scandalized over Miss Key's 
views to the point of denunciation; but we agreed 
that hers seemed rather a dangerous doctrine to 
preach at the present stage of moral evolution. How- 
ever, I suppose that prophets are occasionally far 
ahead of their times. 

Some Swedes accuse Miss Key of spreading im- 
pure and immoral ideas, Froken Nordstern said; and 
they feel that they must apologize to the world for 
her. Yet many of her critics, when it comes to the 
question of real nobility of character, are not worthy 
to tie her shoe strings. For that Ellen Key is a 
woman of rare character — as well as rare intellect 
— no one can doubt who knows the facts of her life 
— a life devoted to the uplift of humanity by teach- 
ing, writing, lecturing, and living. 

Upon the shores of Lake Vettern, near which our 
train passed, Ellen Key now lives — lives an abun- 
dant life. In fact, the motto over her doorway of 
"Strand," her home, is "Memento vivere" — Re- 
member to live. And by her will she has provided 
in a lovely way to contribute the influence of her 
personality for mortal good as long as possible after 
she has gone to join the "choir invisible." Her 
beautiful home is to be left just as it is, except for 
her physical presence, in control of a body of trus- 
tees who will invite working women, sufficiently in- 
telligent to appreciate the culture of "Strand," to 

Journeying Across Sweden; Stockholm 103 

come, four at a time, each to spend a month there 
between April and October, as "the guests of Ellen 

My memory of the long journey across Sweden 
will always be pleasanter because Froken Nordstern 
had a part in it. She was on a very hurried — for 
Sweden — business trip to the capital and I have not 
seen her since we parted at the station here. It 
would be a distinct pleasure to meet her again some 

Now for Stockholm. It is perfectly charming, 
whether seen by night or day; but I saw its night 
beauty first. When the train pulled in, though it 
was past nine o'clock, darkness had scarcely settled 
down. The city lights, however, had been turned 
on, and they glimmered in zig-zag lines across the 
many canals over which the train rumbled, produc- 
ing a weird, fairyland effect which quite excited me 
and promised new interests. 

At the station, hotel agents were lined up in three 
rows, but they were so numerous that I was bewil- 
dered and sought help of a helmeted policeman who 
stood near at hand. "Temperance Hotel" ! he 
called, and a properly labeled agent popped out of 
a line. In a twinkling I was seated in a drosky and 
on my way. The horse wore an arch of bells which 
tinkled festively as we drove through the dark, high- 
walled "foreign-looking" streets; the memory of the 
long, pleasant day was in the background of my 
mind; the charm of the first sight of the glimmering, 
zig-zag lights of Stockholm was in the fore; and I 
felt exactly as if I were some one else — a character, 
perhaps, in a story-book with a good ending. 

But when the next morning dawned golden and 

I04 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

glorious I realized to the full that I was something 
more enviable than that; I was a happy woman on 
a vacation in the land of the Swede. 

Stockholm has not such a marked personality, such 
charming quaintness, as Copenhagen; but it is more, 
much more, beautiful, than Denmark's capital. If 
the site had been selected, and the city all planned 
out by a modern landscape architect, it could scarcely 
be more charming. The place, however, is nearly 
seven centuries old and its founder, the Swedish 
warrior, Birger Jarl, was primarily looking for a 
good harbor, easily defended, when he selected the 
passageway between Lake Malar and the Baltic, and 
proceeded to fortify the rocky, woodsy islands. 
It is this alternation of rugged, heavily forested 
island and mainland, and lake and river and sea 
which has given this "Venice of the North'* a 
setting much more beautiful than Venice itself. 
But the hand and brain of the beauty-loving 
Swede has contributed greatly to the natural at- 
tractions. Most of the streets are wide, well- 
paved, and clean. Here and there, carefully dis- 
tributed over the city, are little parks, bright with 
grass and trees and flowers, and further adorned 
by handsome fountains and by statues of men who 
have contributed toward the up-building of Sweden. 
The tasteful bridges which span the broad canals 
also add their share to the variety. And the build- 
ings, especially the public ones, in many cases com- 
bine in an interesting manner an artistic charm with 
a dignified reserve characteristic of the Scandinavian 

When in Germany I think that I told you about 
the "trinkhallen." The more temperate Swedes 

Journeying Across Sweden; Stockholm 105 

have "vattenbutiker" (water shops, or stores). 
These are little booths, generally at street corners, 
where one can buy mineral waters, and various other 
temperance drinks, and little cakes; and may con- 
sume them out in the open air, perched on the high 
seats beside the counter. Vattenbutiker are as 
strictly respectable as automats, with which Stock- 
holm is adequately supplied. 

Are you surprised to learn that Sweden has pre- 
ferred "water shops" to "drinking halls"? If so, 
I must tell you that from being among the most 
drunken and intemperate parts of Europe, as they 
were fifty years ago, the Scandinavian lands have 
become temperate and are the leaders in the Euro- 
pean "dry" movement. Under Gustav III, who 
reigned in the last part of the eighteenth century, 
the manufacture of alcoholic liquors was made a 
government monopoly. This made the Swedes heavy 
drinkers, and soon a state of affairs existed which 
was heading Sweden rapidly towards destruction. 
In the other Scandinavian countries drunkenness and 
demoralization were almost as prevalent. But, in 
1865, through the efforts of Peter Wieselgren of 
Gothenburg, the so-called Gothenburg system was 
introduced. This system provided that the monopoly 
of liquor distillation be given over to responsible 
philanthropic companies which controlled the sale 
and were permitted to retain only five per cent, of 
the profits from the trafHc; the remainder must 
go to objects of public service. Norway, shortly 
afterwards, introduced a similar method of regula- 
tion and restriction. To me, one very interesting 
fact about the system is that part of the profits goes 
towards teaching the evils of intemperance. In 

io6 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

Norway, the profits also go towards the building 
of better roads, the support of the National Theatre 
in Christiania, the upkeep of children's hospitals, 
and other similar useful purposes. 

The other Scandinavian lands were promptly in- 
fluenced by the reform movement in Sweden and 
Norway; and all over Scandinavia increasingly se- 
vere restrictive laws were passed from time to time. 
The Scandinavian countries are all now well 
on the highroad towards total prohibition. Indeed, 
Iceland, Greenland, and the Faroes are teetotalers. 
Norway is almost completely under local option; 
Sweden is well in line; and sentiment is rapidly 
growing in Denmark. What is of special encour- 
agement to a democrat from the "land of the free" 
is the fact that the Scandinavian people themselves 
have come to see the evil of the drink habit, and 
have cooperated to abolish it. In the Scandinavian 
lands, you must know, the government is "of the 
people, by the people, and for the people," about 
as completely as in the United States. I am not at 
all certain that it is not more so. 

Lest I have deluded you into believing that, in 
consequence of their freedom from evil practices, 
the Scandinavians have fully qualified for the harps 
and crowns of the New Jerusalem, I hasten to in- 
form you that Scandinavia is in the grip of the 
tobacco habit; the people smoke like bad chimneys. 
And what is worse, the cigarette is the favorite form 
of the "weed." All seem to smoke it except the 
babies. Small boys scarcely in their teens puff lustily 
at cigarettes; and I have seen several respectable- 
looking women smoking in the open-air cafes. 
Among women, however, the practice is limited to 

Journeying Across Sweden; Stockholm 107 

the upper middle class and the upper class. 

Now, to return to Sweden's capital. Riddarhol- 
men, or the Island of the Knights, was one of the 
first three islands of the city to be fortified. On a 
square on this island is a statue of Birger Jarl 
mounted on a lofty pillar, from which he gazes over 
the happy city whose foundations he laid. This 
chieftain also conquered Finland and, hence, secured 
the basis of the later "Greater Sweden." Though 
never crowned King of Sweden himself — largely 
because he was absent fighting the Finns when a 
vacancy occurred in the kingship — he was, neverthe- 
less, the "father of the Folkungar Kings" and was 
really the power behind the throne during the rule 
of his son Waldemar. As a member of the "gentler 
sex" you will be interested to know that Birger had 
laws passed which gave to daughters half as much 
of the property of their parents as sons received, 
which, though still leaving room for amendment, 
was a decided improvement upon nothing. 

For nearly a century and a half after the rise of 
Birger Jarl to royal power, Sweden remained an in- 
dependent nation; but, in 1397, by the union of Cal- 
mar, she, with Norway and Denmark, became a 
member of the Scandinavian federation. This was 
in the days of Queen Margaret, daughter of the 
Danish King Waldemar IV, and widow of Haakon 
VI of Norway. At first Margaret ruled the two 
countries as regent for her son Olaf, but in her rule 
she showed such wisdom that when Olaf died, though 
there was no precedent for a female sovereign in 
the Scandinavian lands, the Danish nobles elected 
her as their "sovereign lady, princess, and guardian 
of all Denmark" ; and the Norwegians followed suit. 

io8 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

But the Queen herself adopted the modest title, 
"Margaret, by the Grace of God, daughter of Wal- 
demar, King of Denmark." 

It happened that Sweden was at the time under 
the rule of Albert of Mecklenberg, who was far 
more German than Swedish in his interests. Albert 
was also one of the early "antis"; he poked fun at 
Margaret's sex and gave her to understand that in 
exercising sovereign power she was out of her 
"sphere." Meanwhile, through the oppression of 
his Swedish subjects and the favor which he showed 
to the Germans, Albert made himself so hated in 
Sweden that the Swedish nobles appealed to the 
Danish queen to be their ruler. Here was a choice 
opportunity for revenge which Margaret did not 
let slip; she invaded Sweden, overcame Albert and 
his German army and took Albert himself prisoner. 

Then came the Union of Calmar, formed in the 
name of Eric of Pomerania, Margaret's grand 
nephew, who was chosen her heir; Margaret, how- 
ever, was the real ruler of the Scandinavian lands as 
long as she lived. The treaty stipulated that the 
union should be a merely personal one and that each 
kingdom should retain its own nationality and laws. 
But Margaret had a vision of a Scandinavian nation; 
consequently, she worked towards the amalgamation 
of the three peoples by appointing Swedes to local 
offices in Denmark and Danes to similar positions 
in Sweden, and by other welding devices. It was a 
magnificent idea, and worthy of the great states- 
woman that Margaret was. But it was doomed to 
failure. Though the Queen apparently tried to be 
prudent and tactful, the patriotic Swedes naturally 
viewed her as the usurper of their national liberties. 

Statue of Birger Jarl, Stockholm 

Museum of the North, Stockholm 

Journeying Across Sweden; Stockholm 109 

Under the stupid Eric and his successors, dissatisfac- 
tion increased; the fifteenth century was punctuated 
with Swedish revolts. None proved successful, how- 
ever, before the monster Christian II of Denmark 
had massacred in the Stockholm market place nearly- 
one hundred Swedish nobles, after they had sworn 
allegiance to him. 

This Stockholm "blood bath," as the Swedes say, 
"drowned the union of Calmar" ; and it nerved 
Gustav Vasa, son of one of the murdered nobles, to 
become the George Washington of Sweden. Sup- 
ported, first by the mountain people of Dalecarlia, 
and later by the Sw^edes as a whole, he drove out 
the Danish oppressors, gave back to Sweden her 
independence, and in 1523 became the first king 
of the powerful house of Vasa. 

But to return to the square guarded by the statue 
of Birger Jarl. Near the high-pedestaled figure is 
Riddarholms Kyrkan, the Westminster Abbey of 
Sweden. Here rest many of the Swedish celebrities, 
royal and otherwise, good and bad together. The 
building itself is handsome — in Gothic style with rich 
windows. The floor is largely composed of slabs 
marking tombs of notable Swedes, in some cases 
three centuries dead. In places on the pavement the 
carved reliefs have been nearly obliterated by the 
tread of feet of intervening generations. Around 
the sides are the chapels in which are buried many 
Swedish rulers. As I looked at the tombs behind 
the gratings, I remembered what happened to the 
royal French remains at the time of the Revolution 
and made a new and stronger resolution in favor of 

The famous grandson of Gustav Vasa, Gustav 

1 10 Cousin Hunimg in Scandinavia 

Adolf, who lost his life on the battlefield of Liitzen 
in the Thirty Years' War, after he and his valiant 
Swedes had struck the decisive blow for Prot- 
estant freedom, is buried there in an elaborately 
carved coffin, surrounded by standards cap- 
tured from the enemy, tattered and torn, but still 
gay in color. In the chapel opposite to that of Gus- 
tav Adolf are the huge coffins of Charles X and 
Charles XII. Charles X, you may remember, was 
the king who adventured into Denmark over the 
ice-bridged Great Belt two hundred and fifty years 
ago. Charles XII, the "last of the Vikings," while 
a mere boy was able for a time to hold at bay and 
even to chastise severely the sovereigns of Russia, 
Poland and Denmark, who, presuming upon the 
youth of her king, were plotting to rob Sweden of 
her Baltic lands. 

The chapel of the present dynasty, the Bernadotte, 
is near the door. Here is the sarcophagus of the 
founder of the line, Charles John, of red marble 
with claw feet. The plain blue marble tomb of the 
great and good Oscar II, the late king,, is also here. 
Beside it is a wreath tied with white ribbon, bear- 
ing the names of the present king and queen, Gustav 
and Victoria. 

I went to "Skansen" in company with Froken 
Soderquist, from whose sister in Chicago I had 
brought a letter of introduction. Skansen is one of 
Stockholm's most characteristic institutions — a nat- 
ural park and a museum combined. It is really a 
branch of the Museum of the North, which is near 
at hand. The exhibit in the park consists mostly 
of runestones, Lapp huts and Lapps themselves, and 
houses furnished to show how the Swedes lived in 

Journeying Across Sweden; Stockholm 1 1 1 

ages past — even as early as the sixteenth century. 
The houses, which have been moved in from the 
country and set up in the park, are bona fide old 
buildings dating from the periods which they illus- 
trate. I inspected several of them and found a con- 
siderable degree of similarity existing between them, 
though their original occupants had lived in different 
centuries and different parts of Sweden. 

The building materials were boards or logs and 
the architectural style simple and much like the 
present. There were also the same small-paned Ger- 
man windows which characterize the country homes 
in Denmark as well as in Sweden; and their sills 
were filled with potted plants just as in the Scan- 
dinavian houses of later construction. The walls 
and ceilings were covered with quaint paintings or 
with embroidered linen hangings. The floors were 
bare but well scoured. The furniture was usually 
of simple pattern, but in some cases it was elaborately 
and grotesquely carved, especially the heavy oaken 
chests which stood along the walls. The bed in 
one of the houses was topped off with a wooden 
canopy, and a shallow wooden clothes closet took 
the place of the foot-board. In the poor cottages 
the beds were built into a recess in the wall, one 
above the other like berths, and concealed by a cur- 
tain. Ancient clocks — tall, severe-appearing time- 
keepers of the grandfather variety — held positions 
of honor. The fireplaces were large affairs with 
high, square hearths and square hoods, one corner 
of which projected out into the room. The pewter 
plates and tankards on display were genuine old- 
time utensils and also the spoons of pewter and of 
wood. On a table in one of the cottages were models 

112 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

of different varieties of seventeenth century cakes 
and breads. They looked as if their originals might 
have been very edible and appetizing. In each 
house was a man or woman dressed in the costume 
of the period to which the house belonged, ready to 
answer questions or sell post cards, as the case de- 
manded. A quaint old Swede with a long gray 
beard, a long white coat, long red stockings, buff 
knee breeches and a funny round white cap was 
especially picturesque. He would have made an ad- 
mirable Scandinavian Santa Claus. 

These exhibition homes from Sweden's past are 
scattered in a natural manner among the trees and 
rocks of Skansen as if they had been there through 
all the centuries. But it is not for the houses alone 
that the park is remarkable. It has other attrac- 
tions — exclusive of the conventional zoo and the 
swan lake. A great May pole all decorated with 
festoons and stars and wreaths of various patterns 
stands near the ancient Swedish homes — a pretty 
relic of the days when the heathen Scandinavians 
worshiped the forest tree; and a handsome observa- 
tion tower with many yellow and blue 'flags occupies 
an eminence. The tower is called "Bredablik" 
(Broad View). From its top, Froken Soderquist 
pointed out the important buildings of the city, and 
the canals and the islands and the "Salt Sea." This 
bird's-eye view helped me more fully to realize what 
a really superb site Stockholm has, and how very 
much more beautiful this city is than Copenhagen. 
But Copenhagen is so quaint and charming and gen- 
erally lovable. 

Just before sundown twenty or thirty children 
from the public schools, dressed in the national cos- 

p;-: ■■ ,^ 

PH !Q36 

Selma Lagerlof 

Interior of One of the Ancient Swedish Houses at "Skansen," 


Journeying Across Sweden; Stockholm 113 

tumes of various Swedish provinces, danced folk 
dances and sang folk songs in the park. Their dress 
alone was equal in interest to a small-sized museum. 
Some of the boys wore embroidered jackets and 
short buff trousers fastened at the knee with red 
worsted cords ending in pom-poms; one little chap 
cut a quaint figure in long red stockings and buckled 
shoes and a white coat with tails extending almost to 
his heels (he was the Scandinavian Santa Claus in 
miniature) ; several of the girls wore gaily em- 
broidered bodices, with white blouses fastened with 
large brooches, short, very full, pleated skirts, and 
brightly colored stockings; some wore little fringed 
and embroidered woolen shawls across their shoul- 
ders; others wore the shawls on their heads; while 
still others wore stiff white linen caps, or pointed 
ones of black velvet trimmed with red. The plat- 
form upon which the children played was decorated 
with many flags, multiplying the rainbow array of 

Near at hand was an open-air cafe with bright- 
eyed, rosy-cheeked young women, dressed also in 
peasant costume, receiving and filling orders. Here 
we had refreshments, and sat lazily during the 
lingering tT\alight, listening to the music, provided, 
not by a phonograph, or auto-piano, but by a large 
band; and the Swedes are no tyros at band-playing. 
When darkness had shut down, we watched an 
open-air play illustrating country life in Sweden. 
The stage scenery for the play included the humble 
home of a poor cotter and the mansion of a wealthy 
nobleman; the plot turned upon the rich young aris- 
tocrat's falling madly in love with the peasant's 
pretty daughter. 

114 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

Verily, the Swedes have learned to enjoy out-of- 
door life to the full, both in summer and in winter. 
In the winter they have their snow and ice sports, 
and in the summer during the long, lovely spring- 
like days, they work and play out of doors as much 
as possible. This love for fresh air and sunshine, 
combined with their excellent in-door gymnastic sys- 
tem, their cleanly, temperate habits, and their cheer- 
ful dispositions, have made the Swedes the longest- 
lived people in Europe. 

On Sunday, Froken Soderquist and I went to serv- 
ices at the Church of Saint Nicholas, or Storkyrkan 
(the Great Church) as it is generally called. This, 
the oldest in Stockholm, was founded by Birger Jarl 
in 1264. Like almost every other Scandinavian 
church, it is State Lutheran. And it is appropriate 
that at the rear of the building should stand the 
statue of Olavus Petri, the apostle of Lutheranism, 
who on this spot stood in defiance of Catholic oppo- 
sition and preached his faith. 

The present building is nearly two hundred years 
old. The exterior is plain and rather ugly — of gray 
stone, with a clock tower and chimes. But the 
Gothic interior, which has been recently renovated, 
is really attractive. The slender clustering pillars 
and the interlacing arches which support the ceiling 
are of rosy brick, while the walls are of white plas- 
ter bordered with gold. The pews also are white 
with gold trimmings. In the walls are empty niches, 
which, in the old Roman Catholic days, three hun- 
dred years ago, were occupied by statues of saints. 
As in all old churches, there are plenty of tombs 
under the floor and in the walls. The two altars at 
which the anointing of newly crowned sovereigns 

Journeying Across Sweden; Stockholm 115 

takes place occupy a conspicuous position. They are 
upholstered in velvet of the Swedish national blue, 
gold embroidered; and above each is a canopy of 
gold topped off with a large golden crown supported 
by floating cherubs. 

The sermon, read by a gowned and banded clergy- 
man from a high pulpit, also in white and gold, was 
of a commonplace, prosaic character. When it was 
finally ended, the preacher read announcements 
handed to him by the clerk — marriage banns, no- 
tices of coming baptisms, of deaths, and of political 

In the afternoon we went to the National Mu- 
seum. Flere are fine exhibits from the prehistoric 
period and also from the historic, as well as an ex- 
cellent collection of foreign and domestic art. Like 
the archaeological museum in Copenhagen, this one 
has a beautiful display of tools and utensils from the 
New Stone Age. In fact, the similarity of the pre- 
historic collections of the two museums proves that 
the Danes and Swedes had an identical culture. And 
even yet their culture is almost identical. In the 
Stockholm collection from the Later Iron Age, how- 
ever, gold ornaments are much more common than 
in Copenhagen. In fact, they are astonishingly nu- 
merous. One is led to the conclusion either that in 
the Sweden of those days there were a few people 
who loaded themselves down with jewelry, or that 
the wearing of jewelry was very general. Three of 
the gold collars or necklaces which I observed were 
positively massive, but were beautifully wrought. In 
this museum is the runestone upon which is the picto- 
rial representation of the saga of Siegfried and the 
serpent. Siegfried is there roasting the dragon's 

1 1 6 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

heart; Grani, Brunhilda's horse, is tied to a near-by 
tree. Among the branches of the tree perches the 
bird which has told Siegfried of the attempted vil- 
lainy of his foster father. 

In the historic exhibits are many relics of inter- 
esting Swedish sovereigns : the spinet and the medi- 
cine chest of Gustav Adolf; a beautifully jeweled 
prayer book which belonged to his daughter, the ec- 
centric Queen Christina; and the crown and sceptre 
of Charles X. 

But I cared most of all for the picture gallery. It 
was such a surprise. Sweden has an astonishing 
number of great living artists now — men and women 
who are attracting the attention of the world by 
contributing something new and truly Scandinavian 
to the art of the world. Until the last century, you 
will remember, Scandinavia had done practically 
nothing in the fine arts ; and some concluded that she 
never would do anything; that her race was run. 
But in the Stockholm gallery are quite sufficient ex- 
amples to prove the danger of hasty conclusion. 

It was pleasant to talk the pictures over with 
Froken Soderquist. We both greatly enjoyed Bruno 
Liljefors' charming animal sketches; and also the 
quaint Dalecarlian scenes by Anders Zorn and Carl 
Larsson. Larsson works mostly in water colors; 
and his wife and children are very frequently his 
subjects; but he does not ignore the children of his 
neighbors. Recently he published, with notes, under 
the title "Larssons," a most delightful collection of 
family glimpses; and another volume, more beauti- 
ful still, entitled "Andras Barn" (Other People's 
Children) . Cederstrom's ^'Bringing Home the Body 
of Charles XII" is, I suppose, well known. I had 

Journeying Across Sweden; Stockholm 117 

seen copies of it, but did not care for them. The 
original, however, I think fascinating; and what most 
attracted me was not the central object, the body of 
the king, borne by his officers, but the grief depicted 
on the face of the hunter who stands in the snow by 
the roadside, bowed in sorrow. To him Charles is 
not the "madman of the North," who, after saving 
Sweden from international highway robbery, nearly 
lost it through his f oolhardiness ; he is the great and 
brave king of the Swedes. 

Portraits in crayon of Selma Lagerlof and of El- 
len Kev also interested me. Both women have fine, 
strong faces, but Miss Key's face is more than mere- 
ly strong. It shows the high serenity of a coura- 
geous spirit with a gospel which it feels called upon 
to preach, even though to do so means social ostra- 
cism. On the frame above the placid countenance 
the artist had regretfully inscribed the words: 
"Could I but have represented your purity of soul!" 

Some of the apartments of the stately royal pal- 
ace are open to visitors. I viewed them yesterday. 
The rooms occupied by the late king were of special 
interest The billiard hall is hung with beautiful 
tapestries — not orthodoxly made in Paris, but in 
Saint Petersburg at the manufactory established by 
Peter the Great in 17 16. Some of the other rooms, 
however, contain tapestries of French workmanship. 
In Oscar's study is his desk, as he left it, with his 
writing materials and the portraits of his family still 
upon it. The State apartments are tremendously 
elegant, with carvings and frescoes, brocades and 
paintings, tapestries and sculptures, gold and silver; 
but I have lived in many a California bungalow that 
I am sure was more pleasingly furnished and more 

Ii8 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

artistic, as well as decidedly more comfortable. I 
tried to see the apartments of the dowager Queen 
Sophie, which I understood to be open to the public, 
but the guard at the door in the blue and gray uni- 
form and the cocked hat of the period of Charles 
XII stood firmly at his post and emphatically re- 
peated a word foreign to my Swedish vocabulary: 
"Stangt! Stangt!" The soldier's determination not 
to let me pass was obvious, so I soon abandoned all 
plans to pry into Queen Sophie's privacy, and went 
to the Museum of the North instead. "Stangt," as I 
learned from my dictionary later, in Swedish means 

On the way to the Museum I stopped for a few 
minutes at an institute for the development of the 
Swedish manual arts. The object is to preserve the 
peasant knowledge of old-time weaving, needlework, 
and the like, and to create a demand for such work— 
an excellent purpose. I wish that you might have 
seen some of the woven pieces, Cynthia. They were 
beautiful, both in color and in composition. Some of 
the heavier ones reminded me of the fin,est work of 
the Navajo Indians. I am almost as charmed with 
the Scandinavian art weavings as I am with the Royal 
Copenhagen porcelain. 

In contrast to the industrial institute, the Museum 
of the North deals with things distinctly past and 
gone. It is filled with Northern antiquities of all 
sorts, including a tremendous amount of royal "old 
clothes" — military uniforms, coronation robes, and 
the like. Among these relics are a pair of silk stock- 
ings embroidered in silver, which belonged to Gus- 
tav Adolf, and the embroidered collar and cuffs and 
the shirt — still blood-stained — worn by him on the 

Journeying Across Sweden; Stockholm 119 

battlefield of Liitzen, where he met his death. The 
bay horse (I had always supposed that it was white) 
which the king rode at Liitzen is also there, carefully 
stuffed and mounted, with the old saddle — the gift 
of Gustav's queen — on his back. This horse, my 
museum guide-book informs me, was led in the king's 
funeral procession, and died in 1639, seven years 
after his master. The remains of the faithful old 
steed were kept in the palace and were somewhat 
damaged by the great fire which destroyed the royal 
residence in 1697. That accounts for their present 
rather tattered and moth-eaten appearance. The 
collection of ancient armor and weapons is very com- 
plete, and includes a sword, shield, and helmet which 
belonged to Gustav Vasa, five centuries ago. In the 
armory are also long rows of coaches and sleighs 
richly decorated, which have borne Swedish royalty 
on journeys, ill-fated and otherwise. 

And now I, too, must journey on. Mine will be 
a mere tourist pilgrimage, and will be in the present- 
day, happy Sweden, so I have pleasant anticipations. 
Again "Adjo! Adjo!" 




August 25, 191 

Dear Cynthia: 

From Stockholm I went to Uppsala, which is a 
short distance to the north — only an hour and a 
half by train; and Swedish trains are slow affairs. 
At Uppsala is a fine Gothic cathedral of red brick. 
It is the largest church in Sweden, and its high but- 
tressed walls as well as its twin spires tower grandly 
above all of the other buildings of the town. Red 
brick, I know, does not sound beautiful, but it is — 
at Uppsala — especially when it comes after a whole 
gallery of mental pictures of gray stone churches. 
Like many other things in Sweden, the church was 
founded in the thirteenth century. But the present 
building is quite new; it was completed only about 
twenty years ago. Uppsala Cathedral, like Rid- 
darholmen Church, contains the ashes of many of 
the greatest Swedes; but those buried at Uppsala 
were more truly great, in the best sense of the word, 
than most of the noted ones buried at Stockholm. 
Practically all made worthy contributions to the 

One of them. Saint Eric, is buried behind the high 
altar, in a sixteenth century shrine of silver, shaped 


The Two Uppsalas; Gefle and Soderhamn 121 

like a church, with gables and turrets. So far as I 
have been able to learn, King Eric — for he was a 
king as well as a saint — won his canonization by- 
forcing Finland and the more remote northern part 
of Sweden to accept Christianity. But he is also 
called Eric Lag-gifvare in an ancient saga which 
credits him with giving to his people "King Eric's 
Laws." If he was really the giver, he gave them an 
excellent code, which did not overlook the Swedish 
woman. To every wife was granted equal power 
with her husband over locks, bolts and bars; and by 
this code she also gained the right to a third of her 
husband's property after his death. In view of the 
fact that King Eric lived nearly eight hundred years 
ago, I think that an excellent beginning. He was one 
of the pioneers of the equal rights movement. 

Speaking of saints brings me to the Finsta Chapel, 
also behind the altar, where are buried Prince Bir- 
ger Pedersson and his wife, Ingeborg Bengtsdotter. 
These two people — Birger, the son of Peter, and 
Ingeborg, the daughter of Bengt — were the parents 
of Saint Birgitta, who was obviously named for her 
father, Birger. To the Swedes she is always the 
great and good Birgitta, but among English-speak- 
ing people she is generally called Bridget, which has 
led to her being confused with the Irish Saint Brid- 
get, or Brigid, who was born more than eight hun- 
dred years before. The Irish saint is responsible 
for the popularity of the name Bridget among the 
Irish; while the very common Swedish name Britta 
is, I suspect^ a condensed survival of the old pre- 
Reformation Saint's name Birgitta. 

Saint Birgitta was born in 1302 in Vadstena, on 
Lake Vettern. On the night of her birth, says leg- 

122 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

end, there appeared a bright cloud in the sky on 
which stood a maiden who announced: "Of Birger 
is born a daughter whose admirable voice shall be 
heard over the whole world." We may question the 
authenticity of the legend, but it is a fact that Bir- 
gitta was the most important Swede of the Roman 
Catholic era. In 1346, with the aid of King Man- 
gus, she founded upon her Vadstena estate the first 
abbey for men and women existing upon a distinctly 
cooperative basis. Her daughter, St. Katherine, 
became the first head of this mother abbey of the 
Brigittine order, which later had houses scattered 
all over Europe. 

But Birgitta, if contemporary accounts may be be- 
lieved, did not limit her energies to the encourage- 
ment of monastic life. She was a leader in long re- 
ligious pilgrimages, going once even to Jerusalem. 
And so daring was she and so convinced that she had 
been given the right to speak with authority that she 
did not hesitate to point out to the pope himself the 
error of his ways. By some she was hailed as a 
prophet; by others she was denounced as a witch. 
Certainly she was a woman of high ideals and great 
ability. It was fitting that the emblem on her crest 
should be white angel's wings. Saint Birgitta her- 
self and her daughter were buried at Vadstena ; their 
portraits, however, are on the walls of Finsta 

The greatest of all Swedish mystics, Emanuel 
Swedenborg, is also buried in the Uppsala Cathedral, 
to which place his remains were brought in 1908 
from England, where for long years they had lain. 
Did you know that Swedenborg was a great scien- 
tist, a man who in various lines of science made pre- 

The Tzvo Uppsalas; Gefle and Soderhamn 123 

dictions and discoveries far in advance of his time? 
He was born in 1688. It was not until he had 
reached middle age that he abandoned scientific re- 
search and took up the study of reHgion, which led 
him eventually to believe himself divinely commis- 
sioned to preach a new gospel of the New Jerusalem. 
There is no doubt that Swedenborg was perfectly 
honest with himself and with others. Those who 
knew and talked with him felt that he was "truth 
itself." And though his theology may seem unac- 
ceptable, his religion gave much which the world 
will always need. "The life of religion," he taught, 
"is to do good"; and "the kingdom of heaven is a 
kingdom of uses." This prophet, however, was one 
who received but little honor in his own country. 
There are many more adherents of the Swedenbor- 
gian teachings in the United States than in Sweden, 
in proportion to population. 

The ashes of Carl Linne, the greatest of modern 
systematists, rest at Uppsala; and it is appropriate 
that they should, for Linne spent the best years of 
his life at Uppsala University, teaching and carry- 
ing on the researches which laid the foundation for 
all modern biological study. I have always been 
much impressed with the daring which this Swede 
displayed by classing humankind, together with apes, 
with the ^'quadriimana in the order of primates.'^ 
In view of the fact that Linne lived a century before 
Darwin, that was a pretty long stride; and I am so 
grateful to him for making it. When I reflect that 
we humans are developed animals, I feel that — all 
things considered — we are doing pretty well, and 
can keep up my courage ; but were I dependent upon 
the "fallen-angel" theory, I should frequently de- 

124 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia . 

spair utterly over the seemingly hopeless depths of 
evil into which the angel has descended. 

Gustav Vasa, whose memory all lovers of justice 
and liberty delight to honor, is buried in the oldest 
chapel of the cathedral, which stands directly behind 
the altar. The windows of the room are of beauti- 
ful stained glass, and on the walls are seven frescoes 
by Sandberg, representing incidents in the life of the 
great king. To me, the most interesting of these 
were the ones calling to mind the adventures of Gus- 
tav intervening between his imprisonment by King 
Christian II of Denmark and his triumphal entrance 
into Stockholm as king of free Sweden. One of these 
frescoes represents the king while in hiding from 
the Danes working as a farm laborer and threshing 
out grain for a Dalecarlian peasant. 

Lest all of this talk of dead Swedes give you the 
impression that Uppsala is a veritable city of the 
dead, I must not delay longer in telling about Upp- 
sala University, the place of youth and fulness of 
life. It is the older of the two Swedish universities 
and was founded in 1477. It is co-educational and 
has a student enrollment of something over two thou- 
sand. The University House, so called, is a stately 
new building of brick and stone. Near the main en- 
trance is a large statue of Geijer, the greatest Swed- 
ish historian. In the vestibule are several more 
statues of eminent Swedes. The ceilings of the ves- 
tibule are supported by pillars of black granite, while 
in the corridors the columns are of beautiful green 
marble, which the guard pointed out with consider- 
able pride. The stone was "made in Sweden." The 
aula, or assembly room, i& large and airy, well 
lighted and well equipped, and has a seating capacity 

The Two Uppsalas; Gefle and Soderhamn 125 

of about two thousand. I noticed good paintings 
upon the walls of several of the class rooms; and in 
one large lecture room was a mammoth work in oils 
by Mas-Olle — of a young Swedish woman standing 
on the edge of a dale blowing her lure. The even- 
ing shades of purple and amethyst in the valley were 
unusually well done. 

In the faculty rooms were several interesting 
old portraits. That of Queen Christina especially 
held my attention. Christina, the daughter of 
Gustav Adolf, was, I suppose, the most freakish 
and eccentric of all of the sovereigns of Sweden. 
She had, among other peculiarities, a love for 
scholarly pursuits, to which she subordinated her 
duties as a sovereign. Moreover, she had no sym- 
pathy with the warlike spirit which dominated Swe- 
den at the time. The uncultured Swedes could 
hardly regard such a successor to the great Gustav 
Adolf with enthusiasm. Consequently, Christina 
was permitted to resign in favor of her cousin, 
Charles X, who, you will remember, left little to 
be desired in the way of qualities as a warrior. The 
ex-queen then shook the dust of Sweden from her 
shoes, and later she abjured the faith for which her 
father fought and became a Roman Catholic, spend- 
ing much of the last part of her life at Rome. The 
portrait at Uppsala, which was done by Abraham 
Wuchters, seems faithfully to reflect the dominating 
will and the brilliant but poorly-balanced mind of 
the queen. 

"Carolina Rediviva" is the name of the Univer- 
sity library — a name having its origin in an old uni- 
versity building, which in the time of Gustav Adolf 
was called Carolina Academy. Carolina Rediviva is 

126 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

decidedly the largest library in Sweden, and con- 
tains many treasures of various sorts. Among these 
are beautiful examples of illuminated work from the 
eleventh century on. One of the manuscripts has 
every initial letter in gold. A copy of the first book 
printed in Swedish, from about the middle of the six- 
teenth century, and a copy of a Bible of Martin 
Luther, containing his autograph and that of Me- 
lanchthon, are there also. 

But the distinctive gem of the collection is the 
"Silver Bible" {Codex Argenteus) , of Ulfilas. It is 
by far the oldest example of the Gothic language in 
existence, and is a thing of great beauty as well as 
a priceless treasure from a philological viewpoint. 
It was a real joy to me to see it; I have wanted to do 
so for years. The guard turned over the book in 
order that I might view both the cover and the parch- 
ment pages. Originally the parchment was of a 
purple color and the lettering was of silver; but the 
purple has long since faded into a beautiful rose, and 
the letters have oxidized black. The cover, however 
— from which the Bible gets its name-^-is of bright, 
richly worked silver and is only three centuries old. 
The cover was made in Sweden. This Gothic Bible 
was rediscovered to the world in Germany during 
the sixteenth century. Later it was carried away to 
Sweden by the soldiers of Gustav Adolf, and subse- 
quently was given to Queen Christina, shortly after 
which it reached its present abode. 

I am not a defender of international highway rob- 
bery, nevertheless I feel that there is a decided ap- 
propriateness in Sweden's being the guardian of this 
oldest relic of Gothic culture. For Scandinavia is 
commonly recognized as the cradle-land of the Teu- 

The Two Uppsalas; Gefle and Soderhamn 127 

tonic peoples, of which the Goths were a branch, 
and the Scandinavians are the purest blooded exist- 
ing descendants of the ancient Teutons. Of the three 
Scandinavian countries, Sweden, too, seems the best 
entitled to the honor of possessing the Goths' Bible, 
for one of her provinces is still named Gothland — a 
survival of the name applied in historic times to the 
whole south of Sweden, whose inhabitants were 
called Goths, as their neighbors to the North were 
called Swedes. It almost seems as if the bringing of 
the Bible of Ulfilas to Sweden were a restoration — a 
return to the home of its remotest origin. 

The handwriting of a person who has passed from 
this life helps me, far more than does his tomb, to 
a realization of his personality and of the force of 
his one-time existence. Hence, the sight of the col- 
lection of autographic writings of some of the great- 
est figures of Sweden's past which occupy the room 
with the Silver Bible, was a real contribution to my 
contact with the humanity of the ages. The strong, 
bold autographs of Gustav Vasa and Gustav Adolf, 
the signatures of Swedenborg, and Tegner, and 
Linne spoke eloquently to me of giant achievement; 
as did also the delicate, modest hand of Fredrika 
Bremer, a giant too, whose spirit still lives mightily 
in the women of Sweden. This closer contact with 
Miss Bremer made me want to read again "The 
Home" and "Strife and Peace," and other works of 
hers which contributed to the pleasures of my girl- 

Before taking final leave of Sweden's oldest uni- 
versity, I want to remind you that it was this univer- 
sity which conferred upon Selma Lagerlof the hon- 
orary degree of doctor of letters in 1907; and she 

128 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

stood beneath the monument to Carl Linne in the 
Uppsala cathedral when the laurel wreath was 
placed upon her brow. Two years later she received 
the Nobel prize. 

My last remark moves me to ask: Did you know 
that Alfred Nobel, the founder of the Nobel Prize 
Fund, was a Swede? And did you know that he was 
the inventor of dynamite, smokeless powder, and 
other explosives, by which he made his fortune? His 
arrangement for the prize fund reminds me of the 
Gothenburg temperance system; the money made 
from the invention and manufacture of war materials 
contributes not only toward a prize fund for those 
who have excelled in science and literature, but also 
for those who have done most in the interest of uni- 
versal peace. 

My pilgrimage from the famous modern Uppsala 
to Gamla or Old Uppsala will always be one of the 
choicest of my Scandinavian memories. Gamla Upp- 
sala was the ancient capital of Sweden and the last 
stronghold of the pagan cult of Thor and Odin. In 
the dark forests of this Uppsala during heathen 
times lives of men as well as of beasts were sacri- 
ficed to the mighty gods of the North. 

The old town is less than four miles from the new, 
and the road stretched so smooth and inviting that I 
decided to walk there. And I promptly realized that 
my decision was a wise one, for the landscape was 
charming — suggestive of dear old Bornholm, and yet 
with a Swedish stamp. Patches of woods in varied 
greens and of golden fields with bright farmhouses 
here and there furnished perfect backgrounds for 
the harvesters near at hand ; and the pinks and blues 
and reds of the dresses worn by the white-aproned 

The Two Uppsalas; Gefle and Soderhamn 129 

and white-kerchiefed women working among the 
sheaves gave just the needed touch of color to the 
foreground of the picture. 

After I had passed the turn in the road, the fa- 
mous mounds of Gamla Uppsala came clearly into 
sight, with the steep, gabled roof of the old church 
peeping above them. As I wished to take a picture 
of the mounds, I turned off the highway and followed 
the railroad track, from which approach I could ob- 
tain a more unobscured view. 

I did not take to walking the railroad ties, how- 
ever, with perfect security of mind, for my observa- 
tion of affairs European had convinced me that but 
rarely are passengers permitted to stand on car plat- 
forms, even "at their own risk." Consequently, I 
quaked inwardly upon perceiving a brass-buttoned 
man on the track ahead; but I walked past him with 
my best American air, and proceeded to adjust my 
camera. Presently the official approached me, and 
suddenly I remembered that "ignorance of the law 
excuses no one." Visions of arrest and disgrace 
loomed large. With a waist-deep Swedish bow, the 
man of the shining buttons handed me a paper. It 
was a black strip from the film-pack of my camera 
which I had thrown away, and which had blown in 
his vicinity! After I had thanked him and explained 
that I had discarded the paper, he politely asked a 
question or two about the operation of my camera, 
executed another ninety-degree bow, and withdrew. 
Obviously the man was not so unsophisticated as 
really to think that strip of paper of any value. He 
simply used it as an excuse for attempting to satisfy 
masculine curiosity roused by the foreign-looking 
person upon his railroad track. Swedes do occa- 

130 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

sionally stoop to such depths of diplomatic cunning! 

The three so-called burial mounds of Frey, Thor, 
and Odin, the mightiest gods of Northern paganism, 
stand in a row, Odin's being nearest the church. 
They are real burial mounds, as was proved when 
they were opened some years since and were found 
to contain the remains of human beings, with the 
usual pagan equipment of weapons, and utensils, and 
other objects intended to. contribute to the welfare 
of the Asgard-bound traveler. From the top of 
Odin's mound I obtained a good view of the sur- 
rounding country. Near at hand was a lower and 
flatter eminence. Upon it in heathen times the Swed- 
ish parliament assembled and under the open sky 
enacted the laws; and even as late as the sixteenth 
century Gustav Vasa addressed his people from the 
mound. This good old custom of holding open-air 
parliaments seems to have existed in times past wher- 
ever Scandinavians ruled. The Thingvellir of Ice- 
land got its name from the fact that the Thing, or 
parliament, met there for its deliberations; and the 
quaint ceremonies by which the newly-enacted laws 
of the Isle of Man are still promulgated by the 
House of Keys from the top of Tynwald Hill on the 
fifth of each July are a vestige of the same custom, 
and are Scandinavian in origin. 

Gamla Uppsala church is of such substantial con- 
struction as to suggest that in ancient times its func- 
tions, like those of the rotundas of Bornholm, were 
military as well as religious. Its walls are very thick 
and are of rough, irregular stone, built up with ce- 
ment which gives them the appearance of conglom- 
erate. The church is very old; in fact, its origin is 
lost in the mists of the dawn of Swedish history. 

The Two Uppsalas; Gejle and Soderhaynn 131 

But this history states that Uppsala was made a dio- 
cese early in the twelfth century, and it is believed 
that the church was established nearly a hundred 
years before that. Some parts of the present build- 
ing certainly date well back toward the eleventh cen- 

A note on the church door informed me that ad- 
mission could be gained by applying to the school- 
master or organist, so I went around the parliament 
mound to the white wooden school building. The 
schoolmaster's family lived on the upper floor, and 
the schoolmaster's wife responded to my knock, and 
called her boy — a little chap of nine or ten years, 
barefooted and close-cropped — who went forth with 
me, carrying two mighty keys. The smaller of these 
was about as large as that regularly and conspicu- 
ously carried by Saint Peter, and the larger was 
ponderous indeed. My little boy was, of course, ac- 
companied by another little boy — one about two 
sizes larger. The ponderous key belonged to the 
outside door of the church, which was of dark oak, 
very worm-eaten and old and possessed of decorative 
wrought-iron hinges with handsome scrolls spreading 
over its venerable oaken surface. But the key was 
so large and the boy so small that he had difficulty 
in turning it in the lock, even though he caught his 
toes in the scrolls of the hinges and climbed up the 
side of the door, monkey fashion, to get a purchase 
upon the key. Through our united efforts, however, 
the door was finally opened. It admitted us Into a 
tunnel-like, white-plastered vestibule at the end of 
which was the door for which the smaller key was 
designed. This key being more nearly the boy's 
size, the inner door was opened without difficulty. 

132 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

The walls of the main room were plastered white, 
and the altar and pulpit looked quite new; but the 
church contained many ancient relics. The small boy 
was evidently the regular exhibitor of these; and he 
recited his explanation of them with a perfectly ex- 
pressionless face, and in the mechanical tone of an 
unimaginative book-agent. "That," said the infant 
(in Swedish), "is a Christus from the twelfth cen- 
tury. Those" — pointing to a hideous row of carved 
and painted wooden saints — "are from the four- 
teenth century. There is a bridal stool from the 
Middle Ages." Back against a wall was a chest 
which looked many centuries old, made from an un- 
hewn tree trunk, iron bound. When I asked what it 
contained, he opened the little door or lid on top and 
fished out a wooden Christus, which consisted only 
of a very rudely carved body and head. The limbs 
had been broken or worn off. The figure, the boy 
announced, dated from the eleventh century. In a 
little room off the main one were portraits of an- 
cient Swedish clergymen, and censers and other ec- 
clesiastical utensils dating from Roman Catholic 
times. There was also a copy of the first Bible 
printed in Swedish. Our round of the church being 
completed, I paid the boy the fifty-ore fee at the out- 
side door. He uttered the customary "Tack sa 
mycke" (Many thanks), grabbed off his cap with a 
crisp, business-like "Adjo," and scampered off, the 
larger-sized boy close at his heels. 

Late in the afternoon I returned to the new Upp- 
sala ; and just before sunset I left for Gefle, which is 
farther to the north, and is the port and metropolis 
of Norrland. In Gefle nearly four score years ago 
my father was born ; and some Swedish relatives still 

Gamla Uppsala Church 

Choir of Gamla Uppsala Church 

The Two Vppsalas; Gefle and Soderhamn 133 

live there. These were the attractions which brought 
me there. From the ordinary tourist point of view 
the place has little of interest. It is a clean, pretty 
city, however, with a population of about thirty-five 
thousand. Gefle is really the oldest town in Norr- 
land, as the northern part of Sweden is called, but 
it looks very new and modern with its broad tree- 
planted boulevards and its handsome stone theatre 
and school and municipal buildings. This is because 
it has been almost completely rebuilt since 1869, 
when it was swept by a fire which destroyed all of 
the landmarks of my father's boyhood days. 

Gefle has one possession of which she is very 
proud, and justly so. This is her park — one of the 
finest of the sort in Sweden. It has all of the fea- 
tures which characterize the Swedish park — thick 
clumps of evergreens and birches, with velvety 
stretches of grass between, blazing flower beds, 
graceful fountains playing here and there, artisti- 
cally bridged mirrorlike streams upon which the 
lilies grow — and in addition it has a palm garden. 
There they were growing, evidently in perfect con- 
tentment — a large number and variety of palm trees. 
Gefle, you should know, is north of the latitude of 
the southern extremity of Greenland; therefore, I 
marveled greatly and could scarcely believe my eyes. 
But it was no miracle, as my cousin who was walking 
through the park with me explained. Those enter- 
prising Swedes set out the palms every spring and 
dig them up and return them to the greenhouse every 

As time pressed, my visit in Gefle was very short. 
Early last Wednesday morning I left there to the 
accompaniment of Swedish cousinly bows and cor- 

134 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

dial **Adjos" and "Halsa hemms." My destination 
was Soderhamn (South Haven), my present ad- 
dress, which, like Gefle, is on the Gulf of Bothnia, 
but still farther north. For my journey here, 
through a mistake, I selected a freight train which 
carries lumber, instead of an express. But it was 
really a very fortunate blunder, for the trip was much 
more interesting than one in the orthodox express 
would have been. To the north of Gefle is Sweden's 
great lumbering district, which we soon entered. It 
is a rugged region covered with magnificent ever- 
green forests, dotted here and there by small clear- 
ings brightened by the typical red-painted houses 
with white trimmings. The oat and clover hay 
grown on the cleared patches was hung on wire 
clothes-line-like racks to dry. Occasionally I noticed 
farmers hauling hay in long, very low-wheeled wag- 
ons. These vehicles, as compared with the Amer- 
ican hay racks, have a decidedly Dachshund appear- 
ance. The object of the small wheels is evidently to 
lower the centre of gravity, and thus prevent the 
wagons from upsetting upon the steep hillsides. The 
little barns in which the hay is stored are queer cage- 
like structures with walls sloping outward from the 
floors. They are apparently so built to guard 
against damp weather. 

As we journeyed north, the country became more 
rugged, and the forests grander. The painted board 
houses gave way to a considerable extent to rough- 
hewn log ones, and the people took on a more back- 
woodsy, mountaineer appearance. Among the for- 
est homes I saw several women who were both bare- 
footed and bareheaded. They were at work under 
the pale slant rays of the Northern sun and seemed 

The Two Uppsalas; Gefle and Soderhamn 135 

perfectly healthy and happy. 

While I am dwelHng near Sweden's broad north- 
ern frontier, I wish to digress sufficiently to tell you 
what I recently learned of the work-cottages of 
Norrbotten, the most northern province of Sweden. 
These cottages originated in a threatened famine in 
the region, due to failure of crops, in 1902. The 
people of the isolated district called upon their neigh- 
bors to the south for help; and they did not call in 
vain. Even Swedes living in America contributed to 
the relief work; and, thanks to the far-extending 
railroads, food reached the starving people in time. 
In the remotest and most seriously afflicted parishes 
temporary homes were established for the feeding 
of more than four hundred children. After all dan- 
ger of starvation had passed, the leaders in the re- 
lief work came to see that such children's homes were 
a continual need in the region. Dirt and disease, 
indifference and ignorance, had long ruled in the far- 
northern land. This state of affairs was a result of 
the isolation and the depressing effect of the long, 
dark, cold winters, as well as of the lack of educa- 
tional facilities; for in this bleak, sparsely-popu- 
lated territory the regular compulsory education 
laws cannot be enforced. 

Partly through private benevolence, partly 
through State contribution, the work-cottages, now 
eight in number, were put upon a permanent basis. 
And there they are now, engaged in a splendid work. 
They are educational institutions of the first order — 
doing for the backward frontiers people what the 
settlement houses do for the slum in the American 
city — and more. The needy children remain at the 
work-cottages for nine months of the year for a pe- 

136 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

riod of four or five years, during which time they 
undergo a transforming process. They are taught 
personal cleanliness and orderliness, and love and 
patience and self-control; they are taught to work 
with their hands and to think with their heads. And 
when their course is finished, they return to their 
homes and bring the salvation of intelligence to dark 
places. More than half of the children thus be- 
friended are Lapps, and speak the Lapp tongue; but 
they learn Swedish in the work-cottages. For the 
more nomadic Lapps, Norway, as well as Sweden, 
has provided ambulatory schools which migrate from 
camp to camp with the pupils. 

Thus Scandinavia is doing for her remote North- 
ern population, both Mongolian and white, a work 
such as we should be engaged in in the interest of 
the mountain whites and the Negroes of our South- 
ern States. 

At Kilafors, where I changed trains for Soder- 
hamn on the coast to the east, it was necessary to 
wait two hours. Kilafors is tiny but interesting. 
The great dark trees press in on every, side so closely 
as to give the little village the appearance of having 
been made to order and lowered with derricks into 
a deep hole cut in the forest to receive it. When we 
reached Kilafors it was well past noon, and, as there 
was no dining car on the freight train, I was about 
starved upon arriving. There seemed to be but one 
eating house in the place, and that was a large wood- 
en hotel, already closed, as it was past the hour for 
the noon meal. Hope sprang again, however, when 
I saw a plain little bakery sign up the trail-like street, 
and I lost no time in reaching it. Swedish bakeries 
— at least country ones — are arranged rear part be- 

The Two Uppsalas; Gefle and Soderhamn 137 

fore, the work room opening upon the street and 
the salesroom being at the back, where the wares are 
mostly stored away in boxes, and not displayed in 
show-cases, as in the United States. 

I bought some nice little cakes and some zwieback, 
and when I had paid for my purchases, the bakerman, 
his curiosity evidently roused by my bad Swedish 
and my foreign appearance, asked whether I was a 

I promptly replied that I was not. 

Was I a German, then, he asked. 

I replied more promptly and more emphatically 
that I was not a German. Then, as his repertoire of 
possible nationalities seemed to be exhausted, I vol- 
unteered the information that I was an American. 

His face lit up with vivid interest. "Ja sa!" he 
exclaimed. ("Ja sa," is an interjection employed 
by Scandinavians to express almost the whole range 
of emotion.) 

"Yes," said I, "I am a Californian." 

California, the Land of Gold! The bakerman's 
excitement increased many fold. 

"Ja sa!" he cried again, and stared me over from 
top to toe. I started toward the outer door, and had 
to cross the workroom on an oblique line in order to 
do so. Three men were rolling dough in the cor- 
ner. With my first move to go, the bakerman hur- 
ried toward his three colleagues; and as neither side 
of a triangle is as long as its hypothenuse, he reached 
the men before I gained the door. He whispered 
excitedly. The three dropped their rolling pins, and 
in the few seconds before I made my escape all four 
stared at me, as frankly and naturally as do a group 
of youngsters before a cage of monkeys. This was 

138 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

scarcely a result of bad manners; it was rather due 
to the temporary and legitimate waiving of the code 
of etiquette in the interest of science, so to speak. An 
opportunity to see a "genuine Californian" does not 
often present itself in this north country, which is 
far from the beaten track of tourists. Probably 
nothing short of a Patagonian or an Ainu could pro- 
duce equivalent excitement in the country districts of 
the United States. I suppose, however, that, had 
the bakermen known that I was of Scandinavian 
parentage, their interest in me would have been 
much less keen. 

I took my bakery wares and some additional ones 
obtained at a grocer's into the forest and had a pic- 
nic luncheon under the trees. After that, I walked 
around and explored the place. On the outskirts of 
the village I found to my astonishment a large merry- 
go-round, all fitted up with wooden steeds of many 
colors, ready to rear and prance when the power 
should be turned on. The merry-go-round was 
*'made in America" ! 

On the wall of the waiting room in the railroad 
station was a "Prayer of the Horse," which had 
been put up by the Society of Swedish Women for 
the Protection of Animals. It is needed up in that 
forest region where the labor of the horse Is heavy. 

As train time approached, a crowd of men gath- 
ered outside of the station. I judged them to be 
from the lumber camps, for they were rather a 
rough-looking group. While they waited they talked 
noisily and Indulged in horse-play, punctuated by a 
very free use of profanity. One burly, overgrown 
youth seemed to possess a particularly rich vocabu- 
lary of "swear words," and exhibited It with great 

The Two Uppsalas; Gefle and Soderhamn 139 

gusto. Just when the noisiness had reached its cli- 
max, a neatly dressed, gentle-faced woman, who had 
been standing near me, stepped up to the men and 
handed several of them pieces of white paper which 
looked like handbills. Then she walked quietly 
away. The champion at profanity received a paper. 
"Svar icke!" (Swear not at all) was printed on it in 
staring black type. The voices of the men immedi- 
ately dropped considerably, and after a few scattered 
remarks to one another, they separated. As the 
burly Swede walked away, he caught my eye and 
saw that I had been watching them and had noted 
what had taken place. Evidently mistaking me for 
a native, he came straight up to me. 

"Say," he asked, "did you see what that paper 
had on it? — Swear not at all!" 

"Yes," I replied, "I saw." 

He stared blankly at me for a moment or two as 
if he expected me to say something further, and then 
he moved off. This concrete method of teaching the 
second commandment seemed to have knocked the 
ground out from under his feet. I am not ready to 
conclude, however, that as a result of the lady's 
missionary efforts he now is a candidate for member- 
ship in an anti-profanity society. 

Presently the train for Soderhamn arrived, and I 
climbed aboard and journeyed toward the coast. The 
territory between Kilafors and Soderhamn is the 
heart of the lumbering region. Here I found the 
forests larger and denser, the streams filled with 
logs, and along the railroad tracks large piles of 
lumber covering many acres, awaiting transportation. 
We passed several saw-mills, near which were great 
mounds of bark and sawdust, saved for the sake of 

140 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

valuable by-products to be secured from them, such 
as charcoal, perfumes, and dyes. 

Soderhamn has a population of several thousand, 
and is an important lumber-shipping harbor on the 
Gulf of Bothnia. My cousin Gunnar, whom I came 
to visit, is customs officer for the port. He lives half 
way up one of the pretty woodsy hills, in an ortho- 
dox Swedish house — dark red with white trimmings. 
As my Swedish kindred are mostly town dwellers, 
there is not much to say about them which would 
interest you, for they live very much as town dwell- 
ers do in all countries where the culture is of Euro- 
pean origin. But there were a few things at Cousin 
Gunnar's which got my special attention. One was 
the potted tomato plant growing in a sunny window 
of the dining room. It had several ripe tomatoes 
upon it, in which my cousin's wife took such pride 
that she hesitated to gather them for the relish for 
which they were intended. When I reflected that 
the tomato vine was in the latitude of south Green- 
land, my respect for the small red fruit was pro- 
found. Another thing which impressed me was the 
courtier-like qualities of Swedish manners as illus- 
trated by my cousins. Cousin Gunnar has six grown 
sons, some married, with homes of their own, and 
others still under the paternal roof. One or the 
other of these seven men seemed constantly to be just 
arriving or just departing, and always with bows nu- 
merous and profound. Before these replicas of Sir 
Walter Raleigh I felt myself to be a person of at 
least the importance of Queen Elizabeth. 

Like Gefle and all other Swedish cities which I 
have visited, Soderhamn has clean, tree-shaded 
streets, handsome public buildings, and a beautiful 

The Two Uppsalas; Gefle and Soderhamn 141 

city park. Whenever possible, the Swedish park 
is a hilly tract, rugged and woodsy. Such is the one 
at Soderhamn. And it was beautiful indeed when 
I saw it a few days ago. There were the dark 
old evergreens, dainty, silver-barked birches, rowan 
in abundance dotted with ripe red berries, and 
heather in purple bloom trailing over the gray rocks. 
On a high point of ground is a stone observation 
tower, built in the style of a castle and named 
Oskarsborg in honor of the late king. From this 
tower I had a fine view of the little city at our feet, 
and a panoramic sweep of the tiers of forested 
mountains, and of the gulf to the east. Siegfried, 
Cousin Gunnar's son, who was with me, pointed out 
the elevation near the coast where, in the time of 
the wicked King Christian II, a Danish fort stood 
for the purpose of holding the Swedes in subjec- 
tion. Christian II dominated even so far north as 
Soderhamn. Once, also, Siegfried told me, in Swe- 
den's old warring days, the Russians had sailed up 
the harbor and burned Soderhamn. May such a 
war-cursed time never again come near to the land 
of Sweden! 

On the Train En Route to Falun. 

P. S. — The above letter was supposed to be 
closed and ready for posting at my next stop; but I 
am adding this to tell about a funny man from whom 
I just parted company. He happened to be in the 
same compartment with me when the train left Sod- 
erhamn this morning, and when the conductor strug- 
gled to understand my bad Swedish, he kindly came 
to the rescue and answered my question in English. 

142 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

As the gentleman seemed quite mild and entirely 
harmless, I was glad of an excuse for conversation. 
Nearly twenty years ago, he told me, he spent sev- 
eral years in the United States as the secretary of a 
Swedish legation or consulate — I have forgotten 
which. His English pronunciation and grammar 
were remarkably good, but whole tracts of his vo- 
cabulary seemed to have dropped out of his memory. 
However, I supplied the words as needed, and we 
got on swimmingly for a time. 

After he had given me much interesting informa- 
tion about the region through which we journeyed, 
I, wishing to say something particularly pleasant 
about his country, turned with my usual tact to the 
subject which had impressed me most wherever I 
had been in Scandinavia — the advanced position of 
the women. The gentleman acquiesced courteously 
in my view; and I, much encouraged, praised the 
Scandinavian men for their broad-minded attitude 
toward woman suffrage. Then I suddenly found 
that what I had taken for mildness in the Swede's 
face was really conservatism. He promptly made 
it clear that he was opposed to the enfranchisement 
of women. I asked for his reasons, curious to know 
what a Swedish man's objections would be like. In 
preparation for a crushing argument, he mobilized 
his English vocabulary. 

"What is the word that goes with publicans?" he 

"Sinners," I replied promptly, remembering my 
New Testament and wondering what was coming, 
"publicans and sinners." 

"Oh, yes, publicans and sinners," said he. "Well, 
women are natural born sinners" (I gasped), "or 

The Tzvo Uppsalas; Gefle and Soderhamn 143 

socialists," he added, "which is the same thing, and 
men are natural born publicans." 

''Democrats" was the word he had groped for — 
"democrats and republicans !" I explained that I had 
misunderstood, and suppHed the proper words; and 
then the conservative gentleman proceeded to ex- 
pound his theory — that woman suffrage would pro- 
duce strife in the family, perhaps even divorce ! Men 
folks are much alike the world over, after all, aren't 
they? As are women folks. Other arguments were 
marshalled forth by both sides, but of course both of 
us remained of our original opinions; and the dis- 
cussion ended by my quoting the retort of Mrs. Poy- 
ser in "Adam Bede" : "I'm not denying women are 
fools, God Almighty made 'em to match the men," 
whereupon my opponent laughed and found another 
topic of conversation. 

He was very gallant, how^ever, and when I had to 
change trains at Storvik, where he did not, he in- 
sisted, at the peril of having his train depart without 
him, upon carrying all of my bundles into the wait- 
ing room for me, and upon obtaining detailed infor- 
mation regarding the train which I was to take for 
Falun. He was evidently used to the "clinging- 
vine" type of woman. I wonder how he supposed I 
reached Northern Sweden all alone. 


dalecarlia and the dalecarlians 

Falun, Sweden, 
August 28, 191 — 
Dear Cynthia: 

If you will look upon the map of Sweden about 
halfway up the western boundary line, you will see 
Dalecarlia, or Dalarne. There is where I am. It 
is the land of my father's father, and is the most in- 
teresting part of the country, for here was born the 
national liberty which all Swedes hold dear. 

Dalecarlia, which gets its name from the Dal 
River, is a charming territory, mountainous and for- 
est-covered; and in the very heart of it is beautiful 
Lake Siljan, "the eye of Dalecarlia." The land 
itself is very attractive through its beauty; but the 
people are more interesting still; they are positively 
unique, and seem always to have been so. If you 
have ever read the history of Sweden — ^I fear you 
have not — you will remember that certain of the 
Swedes were always revolting against the established 
order of things. These were the Dalecarlians. Some- 
times they were in the right, and other times they 
were hot ; but they never lacked the courage of their 
convictions. With sufficiently strong convictions al- 
ways came revolt. 

Even as late as the fourteenth century the Dal-peo- 


Dale car lia and the Dalecarlians 145 

pie were semi-independent of the central government; 
for the Swedish kings, in order to guard against 
insurrection, permitted them to retain certain ancient 
rights and privileges unknown to the other parts of 
Sweden. With the establishment of foreign rule 
subsequent to the Union of Calmar — an arrange- 
ment quite unsatisfactory to the Dalecarlians, who, 
however, had not been consulted — came still greater 
sensitiveness to unjust imposition and greater provo- 
cation to rebellion. It was not until 1435, however, 
that, goaded by the oppression of the Danish vice- 
roy, they first made their debut as insurrectionists 
on a large scale. Their leader was one of them- 
selves and bore the interesting name of Engelbrekt 
Engelbrektsson. This man was undersized and in- 
significant in appearance, but he was a little giant, 
and is one of the greatest — as he was the first — of 
Sweden's patriot heroes. 

Under the stimulation of the Dalecarlians the re- 
volt quickly spread to other parts of Sweden; the 
peasant army closed around Stockholm; a parlia- 
ment, which was the first really representative parlia- 
ment of Swedish history, was called; and Engelbrekt 
Engelbrektsson was elected regent of the land of 
Sweden. King Eric was forced to promise to govern 
Sweden according to its laws; but as he regarded 
promises merely as convenient makeshifts and sub- 
terfuges, to be broken when the crisis was past, the 
struggle did not end there. By the time it was over 
Eric had lost his throne, and in his stead was placed 
the good-natured King Christopher, who permitted 
the native nobles to govern Sweden about as they 
chose. Nevertheless, these were hard times for Swe- 
den; crop failures were frequent and the taxes bore 

146 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

heavily; and Christopher came to be called the "Bark 
King" because poverty forced the Swedes to mix pul- 
verized bark with their flour to save themselves from 

But this device was not restricted to the reign of 
Christopher. In times past famine appears to have 
frequently threatened Sweden, and then the Swedes 
would become bark-eaters. The old ballads which 
my father's mother used to sing tell of those dreary 
days of bark bread. 

The Dal-people next appeared in their favorite 
role under the lead of Gustav Vasa. I have spoken 
of him already, but it is really only by constant repe- 
tion of the name of this Gustav that one comes to 
realize what an important part he played in Sweden's 
history. In the days of his boyhood at Uppsala 
University, when the Danish yoke bore heavily upon 
the Swedish people, Gustav Vasa is said to have an- 
nounced: "I will betake myself to Dalecarlia, rouse 
the Dalecarlians, and batter the nose of the Jute." 
And he did. After the Dal-people had once got the 
idea of driving out the Danes, they fought stub- 
bornly and effectively, bark-eaters though they were. 
Indeed, a Danish bishop of the time attributed their 
strength to their diet. When urging that Denmark 
abandon all further attempt to reconquer Sweden, he 
is reported to have argued: "A people that eat bark 
and drink nothing but water the devil himself can- 
not master." 

But the major part which they had played in put- 
ting Gustav Vasa upon the Swedish throne did not 
deter the Dalecarlians from being the first to revolt 
when the policy of the new king did not suit their 
very decided ideas of governmental administration. 

Dalecarlia and the Dalecarlians 147 

Twice they revolted against the great Gustav, the 
second revolt being caused by the oppressive taxation 
which the king found it necessary to levy in order 
fully to establish the independence of his realm and 
to put it on a stable basis. In order to pay a debt 
owed to the Hanseatic city of Liibeck, it was decreed 
by the king that the church bells should be collected 
and melted down. The Dalecarlians violently re- 
sisted the tax, and wrote to the king expressing in 
language which could not be misunderstood their 
opinion of his methods. Gustav, however, suddenly 
appeared in their midst with an army and put an 
end to the insurrection. 

When the death of Ulrica Eleonora without heirs 
raised a dispute with regard to the succession, the 
Dalecarlians, in 1742, cooperating with the peasants 
of Helsingland, once more revolted and demanded 
Crown Prince Frederick of Denmark as king, a suc- 
cession which would again establish a personal union 
between the three Scandinavian countries, and, they 
believed, secure Sweden against the enmity of Rus- 
sia, Their opposition was put down; but subsequent 
events seem to have proved the wisdom of their de- 
mands. For in 1809 Finland was seized by Russia, 
which is to-day considered Sweden's most dangerous 

Falun, capital and the largest city of Dalecarlia, 
has a population of about ten thousand. It has all 
of the elements of solid worth possessed by the other 
Swedish cities which I have visited, and because of 
its location it has more of charm and beauty. It nes- 
tles in the valley of Lake Runn and has a beautiful 
framing of wooded hills. There is the usual natural 
forest park, and there is also a fine birch-bordered 

148 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

promenade. And within the city itself trees are so 
numerous as to give the impression that the city was 
planted in a forest, as it really was. 

Falun is the home of Carl Larsson, the famous 
Swedish artist. Through the exercise of Larsson*s 
talent, the beautiful scenery and picturesque life of 
Dalecarlia is coming more and more to be known to 
the world outside of Scandinavia. 

To me, however, the special attraction of this 
Dalecarlian town is the fact that Selma Lagerlof, 
the queen of modern romanticism, lives here. Miss 
Lagerlof, however, is not a native of the Dal-coun- 
try, but of Vermland, lying just to the south. I 
have long worshiped Miss Lagerlof afar off, and 
while in Paris became acquainted with a friend of 
hers who had seen ''Nils Holgersson" in the mak- 
ing. This led me to become more interested in her, 
and, in consequence, I wanted most dreadfully to 
call upon her while here, but Dr. Selma was spared 
the visit of an additional lion hunter by my reflect- 
ing that doubtless all others who journey to Falun 
have similar longings, and that they have as great a 
claim upon her as L Therefore, I contented myself 
by purchasing a copy of "Nils Holgerssons Under- 
bara Resa" in the edition studied in the schools of 
Sweden, and walked up the street and took a good 
look at the restful hillside home of the lady of my 
admiration. The house is of the usual dark red with 
white trimmings, only it is larger and handsomer and 
"homier" than the average Swedish house; but then 
the house in which Selma Lagerlof lives must al- 
ways possess an unusual degree of the home quality. 
Surrounding the house is a characterful old garden 
with a hedge of lilacs by the fence and spreading 

Dalecarlia and the Dalecarlians 149 

shade trees, through which the red walls peep forth 

If you have not already done so, when opportunity 
offers it seize upon "The Story of a Country House," 
which is translated into English. It contains a 
"Dalarne man" and is one of the best examples of 
Miss Lagerlof's touch of romantic magic. When 
held by the spell of the tale, it seems the height of 
naturalness and probability that an insane Dale- 
carlian who courtesied to cats — mistaking them for 
goats — should rescue a Vermland damsel from the 
grave in which she had been buried alive and carry 
her off to safety in his pedler's pack; that under her 
tuition he should learn the distinction between cats 
and goats, and should finally recover his mind and 
marry the damsel and "live happily ever after." By 
the time you are ready to lay down the book, you 
know that the whole thing happened exactly as Selma 
Lagerlof has told you, and you wonder how doubt- 
ers can doubt. 

It is a far cry from modern romanticism to a 
Swedish copper mine; but as this is "Grufvan," a 
very special mine, you will want to know about it. 
Grufvan is on the slope of a mountain on the out- 
skirts of Falun — or probably it is more correct to 
say that Falun is on the outskirts of the mine, for 
the mine is centuries older than the city and really 
brought the city into being. Out of this mountain 
copper has been dug since time immemorial: I pre- 
sume that the copper that went into the composition 
of some of the beautifully wrought bronze objects 
which I saw in the museum at Stockholm was dug by 
pagan Swedes from this same Kopparberg. 

The environs of the mine are so covered by hil- 

150 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

locks of the red earth from which the ore had been 
extracted that, when I went up to see Grufvan, for 
a while I was lost in the maze ; but I soon met a 
woman, with a little girl, coming from there, and 
inquired the direction. The woman promptly of- 
fered to accompany me for a distance and to show 
me the road; and though I protested that I did not 
wish to trouble her and would have no difficulty if 
she would merely direct me, she insisted, and did not 
turn back until we were in plain view of the mine. 

Grufvan is a great crater-like hole which ages of 
mining have dug out of the hillside. The crater is 
about a quarter of a mile long and deep, and about 
half as wide. The rich mineral colorings of the 
steep walls faintly suggest the Grand Canon of the 
Colorado to my Far Western mind. The great mass 
of copper ore which has been gradually extracted 
from the interior of the mountain had, originally — 
so I was informed — the shape of an inverted cone. 
Through lack of proper engineering, about three cen- 
turies ago the roof fell in, resulting in excavation 
which produced the present crater-like opening. 
Now the mineral is extracted by means of tunnels 
and shafts. As I leaned over the railing around the 
walls of the mine, I could see, far below, many open- 
ings into which car tracks ran. 

While at Falun I learned why the great majority 
of Swedish houses are painted dark red. The paint 
of this color is unusually cheap, for it is a by-product 
of the copper mine. The fact that the dark red 
homes peeping from a winter mantle of snow or a 
summer framing of green foliage add charm to the 
Swedish landscape appears to be only a lucky acci- 

Dalecarlia and the Dalecarlians 151 

It is possible to see the Dalecarlia of the past in 
the present land, for the Dal-people are very con- 
servative ; but in order to do so it is necessary to go 
into the mountain country back of Falun. Here the 
peasants retain many of the ancient customs, and to 
a considerable extent they still dress in the style of 
their very great grandparents — not for the sake of 
tourist trade, but simply because they have not yet 
seen fit to bow their necks under the dominion of the 
tyrant. Dame Fashion. In order to see these con- 
servative democrats I went into the back country to 
Rattvik, on beautiful Lake Siljan. It was but a 
short journey through a rugged forest district with 
tiny scraps of farms on hillside clearings where hay 
hung out to dry. And before I arrived at my des- 
tination I discovered several of these old-type 
Swedes; they were on the same car as I. Even if 
they had not worn the national costumes, I should 
have picked them out. For what do you suppose 
they were doing? Taking snuff! — at least, the men 
were. While the great progressive majority of the 
Christian world is firmly established in the cigarette 
habit, those poky Dalecarlians are still lingering in 
the snuff stage ! 

At the Rattvik station I gave my suitcases to a 
boy from an inn with a hospitable-sounding name, 
and walked up with three women who were teach- 
ers in girls' schools. They had been in attendance 
upon an educational convention which had just closed 
at Falun, and had gone up to spend the week-end at 
Rattvik. During the walk I received considerable 
light upon the educational "problems" which these 
women have to face. The little woman who walked 
next to me explained all about it in excellent Eng- 

152 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

lish. It seems that the Swedish "common people" — 
whoever they are — are demanding that the public 
schools give their children instruction in the lan- 
guages and all sorts of, "for them, useless branches." 
These children want an opportunity to get into the 
professions, to teach, to be secretaries — and "every- 
thing." (Forsooth! thought I.) "And that is what 
we are fighting," concluded the little lady. "Why, 
we cannot even get servants because these people 
want to do other things !" A servant problem added 
to the educational one ! I must admit, Cynthia, that 
my charming Sweden is in many ways quite aristo- 
cratic; it is, in fact, the most aristocratic of the Scan- 
dinavian lands. 

You may be sure that the grievances of the lady 
struck no answering chord in my democratic Far 
Western soul. However, as I did not come to Swe- 
den to inculcate my peculiar principles, I refrained 
from calling attention to the fact — which is very 
patent to all who have any sort of knowledge of 
Swedish history — that a large proportion of the 
men and women who have made Scandinavia the 
truly great land that it is, and whosie memory all 
Scandinavians delight to honor, were of the so-called 
"common people." They came to their own by 
thrusting aside by main strength the "thus-far-shalt- 
thou-go" barriers such as the little aristocrat was 
stubbornly defending. I might have mildly sug- 
gested also that so soon as the poky old world should 
decide to abandon the mediaeval attitude toward 
"servants" and become modernly humanitarian and 
scientific in this regard, just so soon would the "serv- 
ant problem" disappear in thin air. But the profile 
view which the twilight gave me of the very firm chin 

Dalecarlia and the Dalecarlians 153 

of my companion warned me that any such remarks 
from me would fall upon soil barren indeed; so I 
merely told her briefly of our system in America; 
and by that time we were at the inn. 

A pleasant-faced, gray-haired woman in black silk 
met us at the door and bade us welcome with Swed- 
ish cordiality. She was Fru Carlson, our hostess — 
not even the most presumptuous would call her a 
"landlady." This pleasant reception gave me the 
restful feeling of a tired child who has finally reached 
home after long wanderings. 

As I had dined before leaving Falun, I went to my 
room very promptly; and it was just the sort of room 
that a returned pilgrim would wish to occupy in old 
Dalecarlia. On the floor was a rag carpet; on the 
walls were Swedish prints, including one of a boat- 
load of quaintly garbed Dalecarlians rowing across 
Lake Siljan to church; my bed was narrow and spot- 
lessly white, and of just the sort that all wanderers 
are supposed to have occupied in the days of their 
childhood; instead of an electric light there was a 
tallow candle. The large French window opened 
upon a garden, bordering the lake, which looked soft 
a;nd silvery in the lingering twilight. Across the flat 
surface of the water I could see the gleaming white 
steeple of the Rattvik church. With the gentle mur- 
mur of Lake Siljan in my ears, I went to sleep, and 
knew no more until the glory of the summer sunshine 
had supplanted the twilight, and Siljan was rippling 
and sparkling under a fair blue sky. 

This new day was Sunday, and, as I wished to see 
the Rattvikers gathering for church, I hurriedly 
dressed and went to breakfast — a sort of picnic meal 
set forth in a large, sunny room overlooking the gar- 

154 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

den and the lake. It was served in an informal cafe- 
teria style common in all Scandinavian countries; 
but whether peculiar to them, I cannot say. On one 
end of a long table were great piles of hard bread; 
a bewildering variety of unnecessary, but delicious, 
appetizers in the form of "smorgasbord"; several 
dishes filled with hot food — though how kept hot I 
do not pretend to know — and a capacious urn of cof- 
fee, piping hot too. The breakfaster was expected 
to secure a tray, napkin, and dishes from a side table, 
pre-empt a small table, and serve himself to the 
abundance set forth according to the dictates of his 
appetite, utterly unmolested by obsequious waiters. 

Breakfast over, I walked down the deep, woodsy 
road along the lake toward the church. Many wor- 
shipers were already on the way. Some walked, 
while others rode in queer, heavy two-wheeled carts 
drawn by chubby Swedish ponies. The people of 
Rattvik no longer employ the picturesque church 
boats, though they are still used in some of the re- 
moter parishes. Practically all of the people whom I 
noticed wore complete peasant costumes of the old 
style, but a few wore daring combinations of the an- 
cient and modern. Every parish in Dalecarlia has a 
distinct fashion in dress, I understand. The Rattvik 
costume I recognized as one which had seem.ed espe- 
cially quaint upon the children who took part in the 
folk dances in Stockholm. The men wear a dress 
somewhat suggestive of the garb of the English Puri- 
tans of the seventeenth century. Their hats are black, 
high-crowned, and broad-brimmed; their long coats 
of the same color reach about to the knees and are 
made with high, standing collars, and with inverted 
pleats in the back to increase the fulness of the 

Dalecarlia and the Dalecarlians 155 

skirts; beneath these they wear large, brightly col- 
ored waistcoats, and buff-colored trousers reaching 
to the knees ; and at the knee the trousers are finished 
off with looped cords of bright red worsted ending in 
pom-poms which bounce merrily against the surface 
of the dark home-knit stockings as the wearer walks ; 
the shoes are of the low, broad, buckled variety. The 
boys, even the tiny ones, wear garments which are 
the counterparts of those of their fathers and their 
grandfathers — except that in inverse proportion to 
the smallness of the boy is the length of his coat- 
tails. The characteristic dress of the women seems 
to be high, pointed black caps bordered with red, and 
with red pom-poms dangling from the back and 
playing tag on the shoulders ; white blouses and col- 
ored bodices heavily embroidered with wool and 
fastened with large silver brooches ; full black skirts 
reaching to the ankles; woolen stockings and low 
shoes. The chief glory of the Rattvik woman's cos- 
tume, however, is her long apron, woven of wool in 
bright horizontal stripes. The apron is generally 
attached to a wide red woolen belt, from which hangs 
a gaily embroidered bag of wool. Some of the 
older women wear kerchiefs or white linen caps. The 
garments of the little girls closely follow the fashion 
of their mothers. These little women looked quaint 
indeed in their long, full skirts. But they seemed not 
to be lacking in either health or happiness. 

As I walked up the hill, I met a young woman, cos- 
tumed as I have described, coming down. I asked 
whether I might take her picture, explaining that I 
would pay for the privilege. She consented, posed as 
I requested, and I took a couple of exposures; but 
when I attempted to pay her, she emphatically re- 

156 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

fused the money, declared with quiet dignity that I 
was welcome, courtesied, and went her way. After 
the everlasting cry of "money for the peekture" from 
the tourist-spoilt Dutch of the Island of Marken this 
experience was certainly refreshing. That was the 
only time that I risked insulting a Dalecarlian by 
offering money for the friendly favor of posing for 
a picture; subsequently I merely asked permission, 
which some granted and others courteously but firmly 

Around the church is the burying ground filled 
with neatly-kept graves most of which are marked 
with plain crosses. The morning services had not 
yet begun and a few old women, wearing white linen 
caps upon their heads and plaid woolen shawls about 
their shoulders, were busying themselves with the 
flowers growing upon the mounds. Down beside the 
gateway which faced the water were two orthodoxly 
clad men, talking sociably. Near this gateway Gus- 
tav Vasa stood four hundred years ago and ad- 
dressed the people of Rattvik, as they streamed from 
the church, calling upon them to help him free the 
land from the Danish tyrant. The place is marked 
by the Gustav Vasa "runestone," to which one of the 
men called my attention. It is a great rough slab of 
granite upon which, in letters graven in imitation of 
the ancient runes and filled in with gold, are briefly 
recorded the exploits of the George Washington of 
Sweden. Encircling the main stone are a number of 
low granite slabs. These bear the names of the Dal- 
people who particularly befriended and aided Vasa 
while he was in hiding from the Danish spies. And 
this service was not restricted to men; some of the 
stones are marked with the names of women, one of 


■^V'^^^ "^ 





T (f 


, ^fi ^j^^M 










Dalecarlia and the Daleca7'lians 157 

whom, Barbro Stigsdotter, aided Gustav Vasa in de- 
fiance of her husband's wrath. While her husband 
had gone to betray him to his enemies, the indepen- 
dent-spirited Barbro lowered Vasa from an upper 
story window by means of a long sheet, thus enabling 
him to escape and free his people from the Danish 
yoke. At Ornas, near Falun, the home of Barbro 
Stigsdotter still stands, now a museum belonging to 
the Swedish nation. 

The Swedish peasants are an unusually fine class 
of people. They have always been free and have 
always constituted the backbone of the nation; they 
have participated in the government and have owned 
the land which they tilled. The same homesteads 
have been in the possession of some of the peasant 
families for many centuries. 

And the qualities which one finds in the Swedish 
peasants in general are noticeable to a marked de- 
gree in the Dalecarlians, who are regarded by scien- 
tists as the purest representatives of the old Swedish 
type. They are exceedingly independent and demo- 
cratic. They seem to feel that they are second to 
none. In times past, in recognition of their services 
in establishing the freedom of Sweden, they had the 
privilege of shaking hands with the king whenever 
they met him, and they regard themselves as his 
equal. They have a reputation for saying "thou" 
(du) instead of "you" (ni) to all men, regardless 
of rank; they ignore titles of noBility and call even 
the king "Mister" (Herr). Hans Christian Ander- 
sen in his "Pictures of Travel" gives an instance of 
the Dalecarlian viewpoint. Once when a grandson 
of King Carl Johan was in Dalecarlia an old peasant 
came up to him, shook hands, and said: "Please 

158 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

greet thy grandfather for me at Stockholm." 

So far, I have mostly mentioned the characteristics 
which make the Dalecarlians unique. They are far 
from being freaks, however, and have many quali- 
ties more generally distributed over the world than 
those to which I have called attention. They are 
really an excellent people. In their plain, sensible 
faces one can read little of which the Dalecarlians 
need feel ashamed. There is self-complacency, in- 
deed, which in them is only self-complacency, but 
which in a smaller and meaner people would be- 
come contemptible egotism. But there are also the 
strength and firmness which in times past gave the 
Dalecarlians the courage of their convictions. 
United with this are kindness and good nature, a 
strong sense of personal dignity, and a saving self- 
respect. And, writ large over all, is that stern and 
uncompromising honesty which clearly distinguishes 
between mine and thine and prefers the unvarnished 
truth to the polite lie. 

But time presses, Cynthia, the train on which I 
am to leave Falun is almost ready. With me, you 
must say good-by not only to the land of the Dal- 
people, but also to the whole pleasant land of Swe- 
den, a land which I leave with regret, and to which 
I shall return with pleasure. Now, it is Ho for 
Norway ! 


trondhjem and molde ; the norwegian fiords 

Aalesund, Norway, 
August 31, 191 — 
Dear Cynthia: 

My last letter to you was posted at Falun. Aale- 
sund is well down the coast of Norway, so you see 
that I have zig-zagged quite a distance since last I 
greeted you. 

My exit from Sweden's back door was as pleas- 
ant as the entrance at the front. The long journey 
toward the northwest furnished the familiar — but 
never monotonous — alternation of grand forests, 
and tiny hay farms, and lakes and rivers filled with 
logs on their way to the saw mills. Bracke is on one 
of these lakes, with the woods pressing close on the 
other three sides. Here we waited three hours, dur- 
ing which I breakfasted; and then we began our real 
climb toward the Swedish border where the moun- 
tains were more rugged and were flecked with snow. 
During the early part of the journey I shared a 
compartment of the car with a charming Swedish 
woman who busily knit white linen lace while she 
chatted with me. She was pleased to learn that I 
had been at Falun, and spoke with deep pride of 
Selma Lagerlof. Strindberg's best dramas, she 
hoped, were also known and appreciated in the 


i6o Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

United States. Some of his writings, it was true, 
showed traces of insanity; but didn't I think "Swan- 
white" charming? The lady was very obviously a 
conservative, however, for she, as a woman, felt 
apologetic for Ellen Key, who is, however, I think, 
better known and appreciated in America than either 
August Strindberg or Selma Lagerlof. She seemed 
inclined to attribute to Miss Key an unhealthy mind 
and questionable morals, which led me to recall the 
words the artist had put above Ellen Key's portrait: 
"Could I but have represented your purity of soul!" 

At Storlien (Great Line), very near the national 
boundary, we stopped for luncheon, which I obtained 
in the railroad restaurant all set forth in cafeteria 
style. The meal was as good as Swedish "home 
cooking," and the cost was ridiculously slight as com- 
pared with the prices which one must pay in similar 
places at home. 

As I was leaving the restaurant, whom should I 
see but my North Star lady! When we parted at 
Stockholm, she had remarked that she meant to cross 
the mountains to Trondhjem before returning to 
Gothenburg, but I had thought little about it, as I 
felt that there was no chance of our plans synchro- 
nizing. However, there she was, and I greeted her 
as an old friend. Her companionship added much 
to the pleasure of the remainder of my journey, and 
of my stay in Trondhjem. We secured a comfort- 
able compartment and in a few minutes we had 
made our entrance into Norway, by Norway's back 
door. Froken Nordstern called my attention to the 
Great Line as we crossed it; it is a broad strip of 
deforested territory standing out in sharp contrast 
with the dark forest line on either side, and extends 

Trondhjem and Molde; Norwegian Fiords i6i 

as far as the eye can reach over hill and dale to the 
north and south. This simple line separates the 
land of Sweden from the land of Norway; no blood- 
thirsty cannon punctuate its length. Preparations 
are being made to erect upon the boundary instead a 
fine monument in commemoration of the century of 
peace which is nearly complete between the two na- 

Soon the Norwegian customs inspector came into 
the car, but upon our assuring him that our suit-cases 
contained nothing dutiable, he lifted his cap and 
passed on without asking to see their contents. I do 
not know whether his action was due to conviction of 
our honesty or of our poverty. Norwegians, how- 
ever, like the other Scandinavians, are anything but 
liars; they generally tell the truth themselves and 
have a stimulating way of expecting the truth from 
others, and of getting it. 

Do not let my calling the Storlien route Norway's 
back door mislead you into the impression that the 
part of the land which we entered had the appear- 
ance of the average American backyard; on the con- 
trary, it was grand. The Scandinavian Alps, which 
we crossed, remind me of my own Far Western High 
Sierras. They are not quite so rugged or majestic, 
but their beauty stirred me deeply, especially glori- 
fied as they were by the enchantment of the summer 
sun. The mountains not only offered the ever-at- 
tractive Scandinavian forests of evergreens and deli- 
cate birches and rowan with its cheerful bunches of 
red berries; there were also tender, golden-green 
ferns, strange sweet wild flowers — so near as almost 
to be plucked thfough the car windows — and trick- 
ling streams and waterfalls. That is, the streams 

1 62 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

trickled near their sources at the summit, but as our 
course descended, they united and widened and be- 
came Gudsaaen, which is, being interpreted, God's 
Rivulet or River. And if the things of God are of 
especial beauty, the stream is well named. God's 
River flows through Meraker Dal, or Valley, which, 
in the grip of bleak winter, is, I presume, anything 
but attractive. That golden afternoon, however, the 
place reminded me of Bjornson's "Synnove Solbak- 
ken," and appealed so strongly that I wanted to stop 
off and spend a few weeks in one of the simple, 
homelike houses upon its sunny green slopes. Had I 
taken a vacation in Meraker Dal, I should have rid- 
den over the mountain paths upon one of the shaggy 
little Norse ponies which frisked and played in the 
pastures. Perhaps I might have experimented upon 
the democracy of the Norwegian mind by milking 
one of the sleek cows ! 

But the train rolled on at a good speed toward the 
west, carrying me along. And soon we were near 
Trondhjem, which, five centuries ago, before Nor- 
way went into her four-hundred-years' bondage to 
Denmark, was the Norwegian capital. The old saga 
accounts frequently mention the place as the destina- 
tion or starting point of Norse chieftains, for Trond- 
hjem Fiord, around which the city curves in a cres- 
cent shape, forms an excellent harbor. 

Froken Nordstern and I secured rooms at the 
same hotel, and were up bright and early the next 
morning ready for a busy day. We first went to 
the cathedral, a fine granite building in Gothic 
style, which was badly damaged by the Swedes in 
1 8 14, but is now being gradually restored. The ca- 
thedral is noted for the great number of gargoyles 

Trondhjem and Molde; Norwegian Fiords 163 

decorating its exterior and interior — hideous, grin- 
ning, fascinating faces which peer out at one from 
roof, and wall, and lofty, vaulted ceiling. Far above 
the high altar is a colored image of Christ. It is 
very common to see such images in the Scandinavian 
Lutheran churches ; they are simply one of the relics 
carried over from Roman Catholic days. 

Both of us were much interested in the Industrial 
Museum, to which we went from the cathedral. 
Like museums in Sweden and Denmark, this one 
contained rooms furnished in the Norwegian styles 
of past centuries. There were quaint old utensils, 
too, hand-carved cheese tubs and painted antique 
smoothing boards — the remote ancestors of modern 
electric flatirons. The boards somewhat resemble 
carpenter's planes. Round rollers, which were 
placed under them, evidently took some of the wrin- 
kles out of the clothes. One room which was a real 
joy to my heart contained a rare display of the most 
exquisite Scandinavian porcelain. But I was espe- 
cially attracted to the woven woolen tapestries which 
are copies of George Munthe's paintings of the 
scenes from the sagas. The weaving stitch, as I 
remarked of the stitch used for hand weaving in 
Sweden, very much resembles that used by the Nava- 
jos in their blankets; but the work is much finer in 
texture and color. 

My look at the artistic contents of the Industrial 
Museum was as near as my limited time permitted 
me to get to the fine arts of Trondhjem. I only 
recently learned that the three famous Sinding broth- 
ers, Christian, Otto, and Stephen — the musical com- 
poser, the painter, and the sculptor — were born in 
the ancient capital. I think, however, that most of 

164 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

the paintings and sculptures produced by Otto and 
Stephen are to be found farther south in Norway. 

King Haakon and Queen Maud spend a month 
or two of every year at Trondhjem, living in the 
Residential Palace. This palace, which is said to 
be the largest wooden building in Europe, is painted 
white, with the coat-of-arms of Norway emblazoned 
over the doorway, and has numerous Norwegian 
national flags — red, with a cross of white and blue — 
flying from the roof. About sixty of the one hun- 
dred rooms are furnished, and we saw a large num- 
ber of them. A nice old Norwegian, with a smooth- 
shaven face and a fringe of beard under his chin, 
which reminded me of the sailor in the "life buoy" 
soap advertisements, showed us around. He took 
a tremendous pride in every detail of the furnish- 
ings, and seemed to love the king and queen as much 
as if they were his own children. 

The palace was really very plainly furnished. 
Some of the walls, it is true, were covered with 
silk brocade, which the guard lifted aside the pro- 
tective hanging to display; but many were merely 
covered with ordinary paper. The furnishings of 
most of the rooms were no more elaborate or ex- 
pensive than those of most middle-class houses in 
the United States. In the bathrooms, for instance, 
were plain white enameled tubs of the conventional 
American type. One unusually dainty and charming 
apartment was the Queen's boudoir, which was fur- 
nished in pale blue. Here and there, upon the walls 
and about the room, were pictures of Olaf,' the little 
crown prince, smiling and happy. The old guard 
called attention to these pictures of the little boy 
with a delightful grandfatherly air which was truly 

Trondhjem and Molde; Norwegian Fiords 165 

touching. Some of the pine floors were bare, and 
remained so, the guard said, even when the royal 
family was in residence. In fact, the guard ap- 
peared to take pride in the simplicity of the palace 
as well as in its elegance. 

The ballroom was rather richly furnished. Gleam- 
ing crystal chandeliers hung from the ceiling; the 
walls were covered with brocade; and against them 
were arranged chairs and sofas upholstered in crim- 
son silk plush. At one end of the room were the 
seats of the king and the queen, of the same general 
style as the others, but larger, and embroidered with 
gold. When we reached the royal seats, the friendly 
old guard said, "Now you may be queen for a 
while." So Miss North Star and I took turns at 
sitting in the Queen's chair. Queen Maud would not 
have objected, I am sure. 

In the evening, over a final cup of coffee, we 
discussed the sterling qualities and the widening fu- 
ture of the Norwegians. Then Froken Nordstern 
went down to see me off on the Haakon Jdelstein, 
which was to leave for Molde at eight o'clock. As 
she waved good-by from the pier, I knew that I 
was parting from one of the finest souls in the whole 
Scandinavian land. It is through the efforts of my 
Lady of the North Star, and others like her, that 
these lands of the far north are coming to be the 
greatest in Europe. And when true greatness — that 
of superiority of character and intellect — shall be 
made the test of national worth, instead of political 
power gained through commercial control and mili- 
tarism, Scandinavia will come to her own. I say 
this, Cynthia, not as a descendant of the Scandi- 
navians, but as an American of the Americans, born 

1 66 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

and bred — one who has had opportunity in her own 
land as well as in theirs to become acquainted with 
the Scandinavians. 

The sun sank behind the mountains just as the 
Haakon Adelstein left its moorings. There fol- 
lowed a succession of glory and gray in the sky, and 
of wonderful blues and purples in the mountain 
shadows. Darkness seemed to advance slowly and 
reluctantly; the mystical, silvery twilight lingered 
long; I could read ordinary print, as I sat on deck, 
until past nine o'clock. 

When darkness had finally closed around, I went 
down to the y/omen's salon, where I found four 
women and a man — all Norwegians. One of the 
women was a Roman Catholic nun, and one of the 
others was traveling with her. The two other 
women were mother and daughter; the young man 
was evidently aspiring to become the husband of 
the daughter. All were so frank and friendly that 
we were soon acquainted. Though the man was a 
true son of the Vikings — tall and straight and fair, 
with strong features — I noticed what I must call, 
for want of something more descriptive, an "Ameri- 
can" expression on his face; so I was not at all sur- 
prised when he told me that he had spent several 
years in Washington State. 

"Do you like the United States?" I asked in 

"You just bet I do," he replied, in first-class 
American slang. 

He expected to go back to the Far West, he said; 
and it was quite evident that he had no intention of 
returning alone. 

After leaving Trondhjem Fiord, we followed the 

Trondhjem and Molde; Norwegian Fiords 167 

coast of Norway pretty closely. Norway's shores, 
you will remember, are mountains which stand with 
their feet in the sea. And near the shores are de- 
tached mountains which rose as islands on our right 
hand. Before retiring I went on deck to take a 
good-night look at sea and sky, expecting to find 
sea and sky only; and I was surprised and given 
"quite a turn" by the effect of the huge, weird, 
black, shadowy-looking mountain masses to right 
and left, with the lapping, gleaming ocean waves 
between. There was something about the scene 
which suggested bats and owls in forsaken houses 
at night. 

The next morning the fiords were still there, but 
before the glory of the summer sunshine the 
"spooky" aspect had fled, and the mountains 
stretched away green and purple and wholesome and 
living and real. 

We reached Molde, which is on Molde Fiord, in 
time for a late breakfast, of which I partook at a 
charming "pensionat," set both picturesquely and 
precariously upon the dewy, green hillside. Here 
was served a genuine Scandinavian breakfast. 
Smorgasbord and all. But here I met also a new 
delicacy — goats' milk cheese. It looks like brown 
laundry soap — only more opaque and inedible — but 
it is fit fare for the divinities of Asgard. At least, 
so thinks one who likes Scandinavian cookery. 

Breakfast over, I explored Molde, which is called 
"the City of Roses," and it is appropriately named, 
for roses as well as other flowers were blooming in 
great abundance. From the natural park far up 
on the hillside — rocky and woodsy, with an abun- 
dance of ferns and flowers — I gained a beautiful pan- 

1 68 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

oramic view. At my feet lay the little town, peeping 
forth from its setting of tender green, bright with 
blossoms ; beyond lay the fiord, dotted with woodsy 
islands; and, blending with the wonderful colors 
of the fiord, were the rugged, encircling mountains, 
shading from greens and purples, flecked with snow, 
in the foreground, to misty violet, or dazzling white, 
marblelike peaks outlined against the summer sky. 

On the way down the slope I crossed the cemetery, 
filled with neatly-kept graves covered with smooth, 
rank grass and flowers as delicate as maiden hair, 
with the morning dew still upon them. Near the 
walk down which I passed was a neatly-dressed old 
woman with a white kerchief upon her head, work- 
ing among the flowers. The country cemeteries of 
Scandinavia seem never to fail of gray-haired, white- 
kerchiefed old women with characterful, dignified 
faces who work among the flowers in loving memory 
of their dead. 

While in Molde, I learned that the original of 
Axel Ender's "He Is Risen" was an altar piece in 
the Lutheran church there; so I went to see it. 
But it happened that a wedding ceremony had just 
begun in the church when I arrived, and the sexton 
did not want to admit me. I was immediately fired 
with a desire to see the wedding, however, and after 
some coaxing he good-naturedly said that I might 
take a seat in the rear of the church. The service 
had just begun, I found. The white-ruffed, black- 
gowned clergyman was launched upon a sermon rich 
with good advice to the contracting parties, and cal- 
culated to impress them with the solemnity of the 
step which they were about to take. The sermon 
was followed by the conventional questions and re- 

Trondhjem and Molde; Norwegian Fiords 169 

plies and the exchange of rings; the priest offered 
prayer; the clerk sang a chantlike song; hand shakes 
and congratulations came next; and then the bridal 
party made their exit. 

For its very usualness the bridal party deserves 
special mention. When I asked permission to see 
the wedding, I had visions of a bridal pair in native 
costume; but what I saw possessed no element of 
the picturesque. The couple looked just like the 
figures one sees on wedding cakes in third rate baker's 
windows in the United States. The groom was in 
the conventional black suit and had very waxed 
mustaches and very shiny shoes; the bride wore the 
orthodox silk dress and tulle veil, and carried the 
usual bride's bouquet of white blossoms. The only 
witnesses to the ceremony, besides the interloper in 
the back seat, were four young men and a young 
woman who looked as if they might be relatives 
of the bride. They wandered out in the wake of 
the bride and groom. It was a very tame, unin- 
teresting wedding. 

Speaking of weddings calls to my mind a mystery 
which my North Star lady cleared up for me. I 
had been constantly surprised since reaching Scan- 
dinavia at the unhesitating way in which people to 
whom I was an utter stranger addressed me as 
"Froken" (Miss) rather than as "Fru" (Mrs.) and 
had been roused to deep admiration at the per- 
spicacity which enabled those people to decide after 
a mere glance that I was a bachelor woman. But 
when I expressed to Froken Nordstern my apprecia- 
tion for this evidence of the superior quality of the 
Scandinavian mind, she swept aside the delusion 
with: "Why, they look at your hands; all married 

1 70 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

women here wear wedding rings." 

In my disappointment over the conventional 
quality of the wedding, however, I did not forget 
what I went to the church for. The "He Is Risen" 
was in a good light, and I enjoyed seeing it. The 
facial expressions of the three women are fine I 
think; but I do not care for the angel. I am very 
particular about angels. You know the picture very 
well, I am sure, for copies are common in Ameri- 
can homes. But you will be surprised to learn that 
the artist is a Norwegian and that the original 
is in little old Molde, high up along the fiord-in- 
dented coast. Ender did a work on the same sub- 
ject for one of the churches of Christiania, but the 
Molde altar piece is generally considered much the 
finer of the two. 

Outside the church were three little booths on 
wheels in which Norwegian girls with "ratted" hair 
sold tinted and plain photographic copies of Ender's 
painting. Farther along, on the main street of the 
village, were several curio shops, in the windows of 
which were displayed objects calculated to attract the 
tourist: — tiny copies of Viking ships in silver; silver 
jewelry in imitation of old Norse handiwork; genu- 
ine Norse antiquities; Lapp slippers of reindeer skin; 
ancient furniture upholstered in the richly decorated 
Jutland leather; carved wooden bridal spoons joined 
in pairs with carved wooden chains, in imitation of 
the spoons with which in times past bridal couples 
ate their "wedding breakfast"; beautiful Scandina- 
vian porcelain; and hideous mugs and other trin- 
kets, made to sell to souvenir-collecting fiends — 
bearing the legend, "Hilsen fra Molde" (Greetings 
from Molde). All were jumbled in the windows 

Trondhjem and Molde; Norwegian Fiords 171 


In the afternoon I left Molde by a little boat for 
Naes, on Romsdal Fiord. The beauty of the fiords 
will dwell with me always, for they are by far the 
most impressive scenery which I have viewed in 
Europe. Assuredly, the Swiss and Austrian Alps 
are grandly beautiful, but to one reared among the 
mountains of the Far West they seem little more 
than beloved old friends with slightly changed faces. 
Fiords, on the other hand, were something new in 
my experience, and I was tremendously impressed 
and delighted. The Romsdal I consider the most 
beautiful fiord that I saw, and, therefore, I will try 
to convey to you something of what it was like. You 
must bear in mind that, as our old geographies 
pointed out, fiords are "drowned valleys" ; and the 
mountains rimming the valleys are frequently very 
sheer and high. Even upon the steepest of them, 
though, some vegetation manages to find a foot- 
hold. In many places I noticed trees growing out 
of what looked like solid rock. 

Have you read that most charming first chapter 
in Bjornson's "Arne" on "How the Cliff Was 
Clad"? Repeatedly, when gazing admiringly up at 
some particularly daring tree clinging sturdily to the 
steep, rocky walls, I thought of this chapter — of 
the conference between the Juniper, the Fir, the 
Oak, and the Birch, which ends in the plucky little 
Birch's exclaiming: "In God's name, let us clothe 

Much of the pleasure of my fiord voyage came 
from the shifting of color. As the boat neared one 
shore the other receded, and golden green turned 
to blue-black in the deep shadows, and royal purple 

172 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

where there were high lights; and where the sun 
shone through the rifts in the mountains the slopes 
were transfigured into deep amethyst and rosy gold; 
and beyond these, near the high horizon, rose still 
loftier crests, of the faintest violet, misty and un- 
certain against the gray sky — like haunting ghosts 
of pre-glacial ranges. Waterfalls there were in 
abundance, tumbling over the dark, shadowy walls 
and sparkling where the sun found them out; per- 
haps dashed utterly into spray by the sharp ledges, 
but reuniting into torrents again before reaching 
the bottom. The deep water of the fiord, too, was 
beautiful, showing great patches of blues and greens, 
purples and blacks, and occasionally silver grays. 
Near the shore were brilliantly-colored jelly fishes, 
large as breakfast plates, tumbling about. I was 
sorely torn between my desire to watch these marine 
blossoms and the wonderful colors of the water, and 
my wish to absorb the beauty of the mountains. I 
will not presume to describe the sunset on the fiord; 
such an undertaking is too rash even for one with 
my daring. 

I spent the night at Naes, a little village on Roms- 
dal Fiord, but rose early and resumed my zig-zag 
voyage. As we steamed away from Naes, I secured 
a fine view of Romsdal Horn, a horn-shaped, snow- 
crowned peak with veils of mist festooned about its 
purple slopes, rising far above the other mountains 
at the head of the fiord. At Vesternaes I left the 
boat in order to cross by team the neck of the penin- 
sula which separates Stor Fiord from Romsdal. This 
method of travel is called in Norway, journeying 
by "skyds." The vehicle in which I rode is called a 
"cariole." This is a rather clumsy two-wheeled cart, 

Gargoyle on Trondhjem Cathedral 

Romsdal Fiord, Showing the Horn 

Trondhjem and Molde; Norwegian Fiords 173 

with room for one passenger. Sticking out at the 
back of the vehicle is a saddle-like seat for the 
driver, who is generally a boy. The conventional 
cariole seems to be drawn by a fat little Norwegian 
pony, cream colored with brown trimmings. My 
pony was correct as to color, but it was very thin, 
and its harness was so large that it rattled like 
castanets when the little animal raced down hill. 

As soon as I had taken my seat the skyds boy 
tucked the rubber storm robe around me, snapped it 
fast, leaped into his saddle, uttered the queer whir- 
ring sound which all over Scandinavia means "Git 
up," and we were off. The road was smooth, but 
it ran either up hill or down all of the distance. 
Where the way was steep the boy dropped from 
his seat and walked until we reached the top of the 
hill, when he sprang into the saddle again without 
slowing up the pony. If the other side of the hill 
was a gradual decline, the pony trotted; if it was 
steep, he galloped. 

The drive covered about twelve English miles 
and was interesting or beautiful all of the way. 
Shortly after we started, we passed a Norwegian 
country school house, which resembled the plain 
district school houses in the United States. It was 
the recess period, and the children were outside. 
There were several large girls all of whom wore 
small, black-fringed shawls around their heads. 
About half of the children had little books, which 
looked like catechisms, in their hands and were 
studying. The Lutheran religion is taught in all 
of the common schools of Scandinavia. 

Farther on was a hay field which looked like 
merely an overgrown lawn. An old man had cut 

174 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

part of it and was putting handfuls of the short 
grass upon a wire "clothes line" to dry. In another 
place I noticed grass hay drying upon a rack or tray 
arrangement made from the slender branches of 
trees. Surely it is but little exaggeration to say that 
the Norwegians do not let a single blade of grass 
go to waste. 

As the pony was slowly climbing a hill, he sur- 
prised a roly-poly little boy and a roly-poly girl, 
mere infants, who were playing on the road. As 
the children tried to scurry out of the way, the little 
sister, who was the smaller and chubbier of the two, 
fell down upon the road. The little brother, fearful 
for her safety, did not stop to help her to her feet 
but rolled her, as if she were a little barrel, out of 
danger's way. He worked like an expert and was 
a plucky infant, considering his very evident fear; 
but the spectacle was so funny that the skyds boy 
and I both laughed heartily. At this the infant 
cavalier pulled from his pocket a battered tin horn 
and blew a loud blast of triumph and defiance at us; 
whereupon we laughed again. I am persuaded that 
the little knight of the tin horn is no common child. 

For a time we followed an arm of the fiord, but 
soon we began to climb more directly towards the 
summit. Though the mountains were rugged, we 
were seldom out of sight of houses. In fact, houses 
and mountains seem inseparable in Norway. Up- 
on perfectly impossible hillsides clung Norwegian 
homes, near which were tiny scraps of hayfields with 
hay hung out to dry, or with shaggy ponies grazing 
upon the stubble, lifting their heads now and then 
to neigh friendly greetings to their fellow doing serv- 
ice in the cariole. The houses were generally plain 

Trondhjem and Molde; Norwegian Fiords 175 

buildings, sometimes painted red or yellow, but 
frequently unpainted. Tiles or slate or shingles 
formed the roofs of the better houses, but the poorer 
were often thatched, or roofed with sod which quite 
frequently bore a pretty crop of moss and grass, 
ferns and flowers. And, as in Sweden and Den- 
mark, the windows of even the humblest homes 
were as a rule made cheerful by rows of blooming 

Presently we passed the timber line in our upward 
climb, and the mountains took on a desolate look; 
but soon purple heather relieved the desolation; and 
some blue-colored berries caught my eye, growing 
in profusion by the roadside. My skyds boy helped 
himself to them and gathered some for me. 

After a climb of about two and a half miles we 
came to a high valley rimmed with mountains. Near 
the roadside were a half dozen buildings, all except 
one of which were cow barns. The one exception 
bore over the doorway in crooked letters the words 
"Turist Hytten-iooo Fod over Havet" — tourist cot- 
tage, one thousand feet above sea-level. In Scan- 
dinavia the foot is longer than in the United States 
so we were really quite high up. Here we stopped 
to rest the pony and I went into the "hyt" to gtt 
some coffee. This was served by a woman with 
dangling silver rings in her ears, in a plain little 
room, upon the wall of which were large prints of 
King Haakon and Queen Maud. In a half hour 
we were on the way again, and after skirting a 
heath-bordered lake and climbing another hill the 
boy announced that we were at the summit. 

The other, or southern, side of the hill was sunny 
and green; and here were about a dozen cow barns 

176 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

with sod roofs, surrounded by stone fences within 
which were contented little Norwegian cows graz- 
ing upon the sweet grass. Close beside was a house, 
hardly distinguishable from the barns except for 
the larger size and the curtained glass windows. The 
establishment like the turist hyt, was a "saeter," or 
summer pasture. As soon as the grass is high enough 
in the summer the cows are taken to the pastures 
high up among the mountains where they remain 
until the grass is gone and winter approaches. At 
the saeter, butter and cheese are made, to be stored 
away for winter use or to be marketed. 

The summit past, the road ran down hill for al- 
most all of the remainder of the journey, so the 
pony galloped headlong down the smooth road and 
we were soon in the fishing port of Soholt. After 
having luncheon at the Soholt hotel, I wandered 
around until it was time for my boat. On my walk 
I smiled at two rosy-cheeked little girls whom I 
passed on the road. To my astonishment, they re- 
sponded by deep, simultaneous courtesies, and quietly 
went their way. An American child, I fear, would 
have merely stared, called out "Hello^' or responded 
in a ruder manner still. 

Soholt is a typical fiord village. There are the 
tourist hotels, the steepled Lutheran church, the 
scattered houses clinging to the hillsides, the wooden 
pier, the sod-covered boathouses along the water, the 
nets spread on the sand to dry, boats pulled up on 
the sand, other boats with fishermen setting nets 
out on the fiord, and people working with fish on 
the beach. 

The proprietor of the hotel at which I had taken 
luncheon was at the pier waiting for the fiord steam- 

Trondhjem and Molde; Norwegian Fiords 177 

boat, and from him I learned much about the fishing 
industry. Several men were busy barreling and 
boxing up fresh-looking fish. Those were small or 
thin herrings, I was told, and were merely to be 
shipped to other fishing stations to be used as bait 
for cod. Much of the cod which I saw around on 
the beach was from Iceland; — the large boat at an- 
chor in the harbor had recently come from there 
with a cod cargo — but great quantities of cod were 
also caught in Stor Fiord. The Iceland cod is freed 
from its surplus salt by washing in the sea; dried 
by spreading on the rocks along the shore; then 
packed away in great cylindrical-shaped piles on the 
sand — heads in and tails out — to cure. The sides 
of the cylinder are covered with canvas and the tops 
with cone-shaped wooden roofs, painted red. Near 
the pier a man and two little girls, their hands cov- 
ered with thick woolen mittens, were building one 
of those cod cylinders ; and scattered over the beach 
were dozens of the covered piles of codfish, looking 
like little huts. A boat with a man and a woman in 
it, both rowing, was making its way to the Iceland 
vessel for a new load of salt cod. 

By the time I had acquired the practical informa- 
tion which I have just retailed to you, the fiord boat 
Geiranger, on which I was to embark, arrived. A 
number of men and about three times as many 
hunting dogs landed from the boat; but when I went 
aboard I found a goodly supply of hunters remain- 
ing, and about twenty dogs — ^barking, whining and 
fighting — on the deck. However, to my relief, these 
also landed in a short time. 

At Merok on Stor Fiord, a pleasant, wide-awake- 
looking woman boarded the boat, and I soon fell 

178 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

into conversation with her. She was a merchant in 
Aalesund, she told me. The foundation of my Scan- 
dinavian conversational medium, as you know, is 
very bad Danish. In Sweden I stuck in a few Swed- 
ish words for flavoring and the intelligent Swedes 
understood my utterances and called my jargon 
"bra Svensk" ; in Norway I remembered to pro- 
nounce m-e-g-e-t (much) phonetically instead of 
"myet" as the Danes do, and the Aalesund merchant 
lady declared that what I spoke was not Danish at 
all, but Norwegian. I seem to possess a variety of 
"three-in-one" Scandinavian linguistic equipment. 
Fortunately, it works, and is very convenient when 
one is traveling. The Aalesund lady, however, 
recognized that there was abundant room for im- 
provement, and kindly supplied corrections as the 
need rose. 

The lady, I soon learned, was an enthusiastic 
voter. It was due to the fair-mindedness of the 
"Venstre," or Liberal party, she said, that Norwe- 
gian women had been granted the right of suffrage ; 
now the "Hoire," or Conservative faction, acknowl- 
edged that the women should have been given the 
vote long ago, since they have demonstrated that 
they are capable of making good use of it. The 
Norwegian women, she told me, are at present work- 
ing for total prohibition and for just labor laws for 
women. Their slogan is "The same pay for the 
same work, regardless of sex." May they win 
speedily 1 

We spoke of the independence of Norway from 
Sweden, and the lady said that the Norwegians re- 
joiced in their freedom. I asked whether there 
was no regret in Norway over the separation from 

A Norwegian "Maud Muller" 

Piling Cod Fish in Soholt 

Trondhjem and Molde; Norwegian Fiords 179 

Sweden, because of the increase of taxation — as some 
Swedes had told me that there was. *'No; we have 
no regrets," she said; "we are free; we have our 
own king, and, besides, our taxes are no higher." 
That was the sort of reply I had received to similar 
queries all the way down the Norwegian coast. I 
felt that it was representative of the Norwegian 
people as a whole; and I rejoiced with them that 
they had at last gained the freedom for which they 
had so long w^aited. 

I am moved by the remembrance of the lady mer- 
chant's politeness to a digressive dissertation upon 
Scandinavian manners; for the more I have seen of 
Scandinavia the more I am convinced that the man- 
ners here are superior to our own. My compari- 
son is between the rank and file of people in both 
lands ; I know little about the socially elite in either 
country. In Sweden, especially in the cities, because 
of the French influence which came with the Berna- 
dotte line of kings, one finds greater elegance and 
polish (I believe that I mentioned to you the grand 
bows of my Soderhamn cousins) ; and in Norway 
one notices greater simplicity and directness, for 
Norway is the most democratic of the Scandinavian 
lands. Nevertheless, the code of manners is very 
similar all over Scandinavia; the people are every- 
where courteous, and their courtesy reflects their 
national characteristics — -reserve, sincerity, and 

I was particularly struck with the pleasant way 
in which the people "speak each other in passing." 
Upon entering a compartment in a railroad train a 
passenger quietly greets the occupants already there, 
and upon leaving he utters a comprehensive farewell. 

i8o Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

The same courtesy is observed in Scandinavia 
among strangers wherever the daily round of life 
brings them into contact. For instance, a shopper 
does not think of making a purchase without first 
greeting the salesman; or of departing from a shop 
without a courteous word of leave-taking. Scandi- 
navians are not too busy thus to recognize our com- 
mon humanity. I like the custom well. 

*'Vaer saa god" is a polite expression which one 
hears everywhere in Scandinavia. The words as I 
have given them are Danish, but they are the same 
in Sweden or Norway, except for slight variation 
in spelling and, consequently, in pronunciation. We 
have no single equivalent in English for the expres- 
sion, which literally means "Be so good"; but its 
use is very similar to the German "Bitte." These 
versatile words are employed where we would use 
"Please," "I beg your pardon," "Permit me," and 
the like — and in some cases where we would say 
nothing at all. 

The handshake is an important institution in 
Scandinavia ; the American handshake would appear 
to be but a very degenerate vestige of it. People 
here not only shake hands more commonly than we 
do at meeting and parting, and upon offering con- 
gratulations, but they also give the hand upon offer- 
ing thanks for a gift; and to seal a business transac- 
tion; and, most interesting of all, at the close of 
a meal. 

This last usage seems especially quaint and formal, 
but it is still very common among country people. 
Upon rising from the table at the conclusion of a 
meal a guest offers his hand to his host and hostess 
and says: "Tak for mad" — Thanks for the meal. 

Trondhjem and Molde; Norwegian Fiords i8i 

(This is the Danish spelling; the Swedish differs 
slightly.) And in old-fashioned Scandinavian house- 
holds the little children are trained to offer thanks 
to their parents in the same formal manner for the 
food of which they have partaken. 

In his essay on "Grace before Meat," Charles 
Lamb suggests that the custom of offering a prayer 
of thanksgiving before meals originated in the "early 
times of the world, and the hunter state of man, 
when dinners were precarious things and a full meal 
was something more than a common blessing." The 
practice of saying "Tak for mad" after the meal to 
those to whom one is most directly indebted for it, 
I suggest, may have an equally venerable origin. 

The customary reply to an expression of thanks 
is "Vaelkommen" or "Sel tak," which, literally 
translated, is "Thanks yourself" ; but it is really the 
equivalent of our phrase, "The pleasure is all mine.^' 

I have mentioned merely the most noticeable cour- 
teous usages of the Scandinavians, and now I must 
close my dissertation. But in doing so I wish to sug- 
gest the reason why the Scandinavian in the United 
States seems frequently so lacking in manners. To 
the average American he is a "damned foreigner"; 
he even acknowledges himself a "greenhorn"; and 
in his eager attempt to bridge the chasm between 
himself and the native American, he quickly drops 
all polite usages peculiar to his home land — for 
they rouse only ill-concealed amusement — and adopts 
the more obvious American polite forms such as 
get his attention. In consequence, the fine-mannered 
Scandinavian becomes the rude Scandinavian-Amer- 
ican. I have repeatedly seen this unfortunate trans- 
formation take place in newly-arrived Scandinavians 

1 82 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

In the United States. 

Now I am back at Aalesund again, mentally, as 
I have been physically, the whole evening. It Is to 
be my point of departure from the fiords. And I 
am glad to depart, for Aalesund is devoted almost 
completely to fish Industries. Fish or skeletons of 
fish everywhere! For instance, this evening as we 
slipped into the harbor, I noticed Incredibly large 
stacks of fish bones outside of some mills, waiting 
to be ground up, after which they begin another 
career of usefulness as guano, or fertilizer, for 
Impoverished soil. And think of the mountains of 
fish which contribute the bones! 

The place is very fishy indeed. And lest you 
begin to taste cod-liver oil I will break off now and 
bid you good-by until I reach Christlania, whither 
I am bound, via Bergen. 


bergen and christiania 

Christiania, Norway, 

September 5, 191 — 
My dear Cynthia: 

Last Tuesday I left Aalesund by steamer for 
Bergen, where I arrived early the following morn- 
ing. Like practically all of the larger towns of Nor- 
way, Bergen is situated upon a fiord and has a very 
attractive approach from the water. It is the place 
which is said to have thirteen months of rain per 
year; and I believe that it deserves the reputation, 
for did the year contain thirteen months, the Bergen 
weather clerk would certainly deluge them all. Rain 
was pouring down when I arrived; it drizzled or 
poured throughout my stay ; and was tapping drearily 
against the car windows when I departed. 

As the Bergen market is particularly famous, I 
was anxious to see it, and lost no time after my 
arrival in going there. A great variety of things 
were being bought and sold: — fruit and flowers — 
potted and cut — vegetables, dishes, carved trinkets, 
brushes, brooms; but especially fish; Bergen spe- 
cializes upon fish. There were dozens and dozens of 
different kinds of fish; some alive and swimming 
about in tanks, others dead and sliced. Most of 
the sellers were from the country and had their 


184 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

goods in hand carts or baskets. The women were 
kerchiefed and in many cases sat upon small camp 
stools knitting while waiting for customers. The 
purchasers were, obviously, mostly town dwellers. 
Many of them went off with a parcel of "smelly" 
fish in one hand and a fragrant posy in the other. 
One chin-whiskered old Norseman strolled off carry- 
ing a long fish by the jaws without any wrapping. 
It was very Interesting to watch the bargaining there 
in the rain. For these people did not mind ordinary 
rain any more than ducks. When it poured down, 
the mere onlookers took shelter in neighboring door- 
ways; but the people who had negotiations under 
way stubbornly stood their ground. 

From the market place I went to Haakon's Hall. 
This is a restoration and is the lineal descendant 
of a building erected for festive purposes by King 
Haakon Haakonson in the thirteenth century, in the 
days of Norway's early period of independence. The 
original hall was soon destroyed by fire, and various 
new buildings subsequently came to an end in a 
similar manner; but restorations were always made. 
The original purpose of the structure was lost sight 
of, however, and at the close of the seventeenth 
century Haakon's banqueting hall had been reduced 
to the function of a storehouse for grain. Later 
it became a military prison; and then was elevated 
to the dignity of a chapel for military prisoners. 
Finally it reached the nineteenth century — the cen- 
tury of restoration — with a fair fraction of the 
mediaeval architecture still intact; and a little over 
forty years ago the latest restoration was made. The 
structure is In the English-Gothic style which char- 
acterized it during the Middle Ages. Archltec- 

Bergen and Christiania 185 

turally it is the only building of its class in the 

I am very fond of the old Norse sagas, many 
scenes of which are laid in the ancient banqueting 
halls, and, consequently, looked forward with pleas- 
ure to seeing Haakon's Hall, though even the orig- 
inal building was constructed after saga days. The 
vestibule with its ribbed vaulting, at the base of 
which projected, at right angles to the walls, fish 
heads in dark carved oak, did much towards exciting 
my desire to see the main room. Imagine, then, my 
disappointment upon learning when I reached the 
hall that it was temporarily closed for repairs. But 
I did see it after all — or part of it. As I was going 
down the stairs I met two English women who had 
been disappointed like myself; and at the bottom 
of the stairs was a gentleman who formed the third 
in the party. The gentleman, as I soon found, had 
explored to great advantage after being turned away 
from the front door. And I profited by his explora- 
tions. ''If you want to see the interior of the hall," 
said he, "cross that large room on this floor, turn up 
the stairway to your right, and peek though the key- 
hole which you will find at the top." I did as di- 
rected, and for the first time in my life realized 
the possibilities of keyholes as satisfiers of curiosity, 
— legitimate and otherwise. The keyhole was in a 
door of the banqueting hall and, like all ancient 
keyholes, was good and large. Through it I gained 
a view of the finely vaulted ceiling, the high, dim 
windows, the guest benches around the walls dec- 
orated with massive hand carvings, the dais upon 
which the seat of the king had stood. 

When, in ancient times, the place was the scene 

1 86 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

of banquets the walls were hung with armor and 
weapons and with tapestries illustrating the old 
Norse hero tales; the seats of honor around the 
walls were occupied by the most distinguished guests ; 
the king sat upon his high seat upon the dais. When 
the meal was to be served, tables were brought, the 
white cloth was spread, and upon it were placed in 
abundance the delicacies of the North — including 
"clotted milk." Imagine those doughty old warrior 
candidates for Valhalla sitting down to partake of 
anything so meek and mild as clabber milk! But so 
the sagas tell us they did; and clabber milk, slightly 
sweetened and spiced, is a favorite dish among Scan- 
dinavians even unto the present day. Such feasts 
also included ample supplies of fish, flesh and fowl. 
And mead, and wine and ale, dispensed by the hands 
of the fair hostess and her ladies, fl^owed mightily. 

In the saga period and before it the Scandinavian 
banquet hall was really very similar to the restora- 
tion from the time of Haakan Haakonson. The 
chief difference was that instead of the great fire- 
places along the side walls, which appear in 
Haakon's Hall, the fire was simply built on hearths 
down the middle of the room and the smoke escaped 
as best it could through a hole above in the roof. 
Sometimes, when overpowered by the charm of the 
old sagas, I foolishly look back with wistfulness to 
those "brave days of old"; but I soon remember 
the smoky rooms and the flowing drinking horn and 
then I thank my Stars and Stripes that I am a mod- 

The same King Haakon who built the hall also 
built the original tower to which at present the name 
of Rosenkrantz is given. From the square, battle- 

Rosenkrantz Tower (Right) and Haakon's Hall (Left), Bergen 

Norwegian Mountain Homes 

Bergen and Chrtstiania 187 

merited top, I obtained a fine view of the city and 
its environs, and also of the broad wall with soldiers 
on guard, which connects the tower with Haakon's 
Hall. In one of the most innocent-looking walls 
in the tower the guard showed me a secret door 
which opened into a secret staircase. Such a stair- 
case in the "brave days of old" occasionally came 
in handy in enabling one to reach an underground 
passage and make good one's escape from one's 
warrior neighbors. Beneath the tower is a semi- 
circular dungeon where these neighbors were at times 
locked when they were caught. A light was burning 
in the place when I saw it but this seemed only to 
burn a small hole in the darkness and to make the 
intense quality of that darkness visible. There was 
no provision for light or air from the outside. 
Again I was grateful to have my turn at living thus 
late; for though we are not yet so humanitarian as 
to congratulate ourselves, we have surely progressed 
a little further toward the recognition of universal 
human brotherhood than the folk of the time of 
Haakon Haakonson. 

Bergen, you perhaps remember, is the city of the 
great violinist, Ole Bull. In one of the public 
squares is a fine bronze statue of him by Stephen 
Sinding. He is represented as playing upon his in- 
strument, while he stands upon a pile of rough boul- 
ders, about which splashes a real fountain. In the 
water at the base of the statue is a grotesque bronze 
water sprite which responds to the enchanting call 
of the violin by strains from a rustic harp. Bull 
spent many of his later years in the United States 
but he died in Bergen, where he was buried in the 
quaint old cemetery under the hill. The ivy-cov- 

1 88 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

ered tomb Is near the entrance. On top of the 
mound Is a bronze urn about four feet high, bearing 
the simple Inscription "Ole Bull 1 810-1880." When 
I saw It, the urn was wreathed with purple heather 
tied with the Norwegian national colors like our 
own, red, white and blue. 

I left Bergen by the overland route via FInse. As 
I before said, It was raining — a discouraging per- 
sistent drizzle — when I took my departure. Upon 
entering my compartment I found a rather frail- 
looking man, a more frail-looking woman, and a big, 
fat, rosy-cheeked baby about a year old, whom the 
man was holding. From their conversation I soon 
gathered that the mother was on her way to Chrls- 
tiania to visit relatives, that the father was able to 
accompany her for but a short distance upon the 
way, and that he was worried lest the long journey 
and the care of the heavy, active baby would be too 
much for her. He glanced inquiringly at me several 
times as we neared the place at which he was to 
leave the train, and appeared about to speak; but 
he evidently weakened before my formidable appear- 
ance and his request remained unuttered. The min- 
ute I had set eyes upon the interesting-looking baby 
I had determined to borrow her as soon as oppor- 
tunity offered, and thus pass time on the journey; 
but as I realized that the father could hardly read 
my inner thoughts, I proceeded to play with the 
little Augusta, in order to relieve his mind before he 
left the train. Greatly encouraged, the man pro- 
ceeded to tell me what I already knew. I promptly 
said that I was going directly to Christlania and 
would take care of the mother and help with the 
baby all of the way; and that I would not leave them 

Bergen and Chris tiania 189 

without seeing them safely deposited in the bosom 
of the Christiania relatives. The relief and grati- 
tude of the man was tremendous. Shortly after that 
his station was called, so he said good-by, handed 
little Augusta over to me, and left the train. They 
had come from Stavanger, the lady told me— the 
part of Norway where the most interesting peasant 
costumes of ancient style are still worn. And Herr 
Larson, her husband, was a pastor there and a 
teacher in a Lutheran missionary training school. 

For a time the road lay along an arm of a fiord, 
but soon we began a serious climb and presently 
were again among the rocky, woodsy mountains, with 
tumbling waterfalls. And in this setting here and 
there were huts with walls of unhewn stone and 
roofs of irregular sheets of flat rock laid on in crazy 
patchwork style, overlapping from the top. Farther 
on, we passed the timber line, when came the inevit- 
able snow sheds and tunnels, alternating with snowy 
peaks and great, fantastic, jutting rocks, which in 
some places overhung the railroad tracks. Near 
the summit at Finse a peculiar vegetation caught my 
attention. There were great patches of bright 
cherry-colored grass, and other plants in bright scar- 
lets and yellows, producing a very pleasing rainbow 
effect, which was especially welcome In the absence 
of forests. Beyond the summit, on the descent 
towards Christiania up among the sunny slopes of 
the highest mountains, we passed first the saeters, 
with' stone roofs and stone fences, clinging like 
barnacles to the sheer mountain sides; next came a 
beautiful farming district suggesting Meraker Dal; 
and then we stopped at Aal, a small station about 
which were gathered a number of people In their 

190 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

Sunday clothes — for it was Sunday. The costumes 
were of the old national style, Fru Larson told me, 
and were peculiar to the region. The most charac- 
teristic garment of the women was a white fringed 
shawl with borders stamped in bright colors, such 
as I had also noticed in Dalecarlia, in Sweden. The 
boys' and men's costumes were more unique; they 
wore short black jackets of the "Eton" cut with 
a double row of silver buttons in front; a double- 
breasted waistcoat, also with the two rows of silver 
buttons ; black trousers down to their very heels ; and 
they were topped off with very large black felt hats. 

Soon we followed the course of a river again, 
varied by many beautiful rapids and falls. On this 
part of the road were also numerous log houses, 
some weathered and gray, others spick and span in 
dark red paint which looked as if it had come across 
the boundary from Sweden. Presently sunset came, 
followed by twilight and darkness; but occasional 
lights indicated the vicinity of Norwegian country 
homes. A little after nine o'clock a great constella- 
tion of flickering lights ahead roused my tired travel- 
ing companion to remark that this was Christiania. 
Relatives were at the station to meet her, so after 
bidding her and little fat, sleepy Augusta good-by, 
I went directly to a hotel, which was just off Carl 
Johans Gade. 

Carl Johans is decidedly the most important and 
beautiful street in Christiania. It is wide and clean, 
and is flanked by handsome buildings and shady 
parks. At one end, upon a slight eminence, the 
royal palace stands, surrounded by a fine park. I 
was told that the palace was open to visitors, so I 
decided the morning after my arrival to have a look 

Bergen and Chris tiania 191 

at it; and I planned to go up to the palace on the 
left hand side of the street and to return on the 
right. On my way up I passed the building of the 
Norwegian Storthing, or Parliament, and the im- 
posing National Theatre in Studenten Lund (Stu- 
dents' Grove). In front of the theatre are bronze 
statues of Bjornson and Ibsen, Norway's two great- 
est dramatic writers, by Stephen Sinding. Upon a 
high pedestal on the hill near the palace is a monu- 
ment to Niels Henrik Abel, the Norwegian mathe- 
matical prodigy, who, with flying hair and an expres- 
sion of determination on his alert countenance, is 
represented as treading under foot two figures with 
ugly, distorted faces, evidently the personifications 
of Ignorance and Error. Abel was scarcely more 
than a boy when he died — only twenty-seven — but 
he left to his credit several mathematical discoveries 
of first importance. 

In front of the royal palace stands a great bronze 
equestrian statue of Carl Johan, the first Bernadotte 
king of Sweden. On one side of the pedestal is 
the motto of the king, "The love of the people is 
my reward," and on the other is the statement, 
"This monument was raised by the people of Nor- 

The palace is a large, plain building in classical 
style. The double doors were open, so I walked in 
and started for the stairs. I had not got very far, 
however, before a gilt-buttoned and barred indi- 
vidual ran down another staircase and stopped me 
with "Vaer saa god," the versatile Scandinavian 
phrase which I told you about in my last letter. This 
time the expression was polite Norwegian for 
"Halt!" The palace was not open to visitors, I 

192 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

was informed. Suppose that the guards had been 
napping and that I had innocently got upstairs and 
interrupted King Haakon and Queen Maud at their 
royal breakfast! Would I have been arrested as 
a Russian or German spy? Or as an anarchist? I 
think not. Their majesties would have simply be- 
lieved my explanation and would have had me es- 
corted out in the most courteous manner possible. 

Later, I learned that certain parts of the palace 
were open to visitors in the afternoon, when the 
royal family was not in residence. 

After wandering for a time about the beautiful 
palace gardens, I returned down the right side of 
the Gade as I had planned. On this north side is 
the University of Christiania, exactly opposite the 
Royal Theatre, which, as I said, is in the Students' 
Grove. The building is in classical style with a 
wing on either side, at right angles to it. The 
university is co-educational; women have equal op- 
portunities with men; and both sexes wear identical 
students' caps, as in the other Scandinavian univer- 
sities, with a button in front, of their own national 
colors. In the garden back of the university are 
set up several large interesting rune stones. In a 
building at the rear of this yard I found an exhibit 
prepared by the Scandinavian Society for Fighting 
Tuberculosis. The exhibit as a whole was of the 
usual sort, and showed how progressive the Scan- 
dinavian lands are in their fight against the "white 
plague," as well as in their struggle against unhy- 
gienic conditions in general. But there was one un- 
usual display — that of lupus, or external tubercu- 
losis, which generally attacks the face. Wax models 
represented the terrible ravages wrought by the dis- 










Bergen and Chris tiania 193 

ease, and also the remarkable healing effects of the 
Finsen light. 

Niels Finsen, who discovered the wonderful cura- 
tive effects of certain light rays, was a Danish physi- 
cian born in the Faroe Islands. Though poverty- 
stricken and struggling against an incurable disease, 
he had none of his discoveries patented; he gave 
them all freely for the good of humanity. And 
when he was awarded the Nobel prize for his con- 
tribution to medical science, he donated the prize 
money to the Light Institute which he founded in 
Copenhagen. Not until his friends had made up an 
equivalent sum by gifts, for the benefit of the Insti- 
tute, would he take back a half of the well-won prize. 
Dr. Finsen was one of the noblest souls of which I 
have any knowledge. When in Copenhagen, I no- 
ticed a peculiarly appropriate monument to him; 
three beautiful bronze figures were represented as 
extending their arms in adoration towards the sun- 
light. The Scandinavians do well to remember Dr. 
Finsen with pride and gratitude. 

I told you about the fascinating handwork which 
I had seen in Trondhjem. On Carl Johans Gade 
I found an even more varied and beautiful display. 
It was in a shop which is subsidized by the govern- 
ment in order that the manual arts of the peasants 
shall not be lost to the world. Here were elab- 
orately embroidered national costumes of homespun, 
and rugs, portieres, and tapestries — beautiful in 
pattern and color^ — all woven on hand-looms. 
Among the tapestries were some woven after the 
designs of Gerhardt Munthe from the saga tales; 
and in the patterns were occasionally included lines 
from the sagas. 

194 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

Christlania has a large art collection, and one 
which surprised me by the number of works by 
native artists which it contains. Munthe is well rep- 
resented; his subjects are always interesting, and his 
colors are remarkably clear and fresh. Edvard 
Munch's pictures, on the other hand, were too sen- 
sational to suit me ; he is too much of an extreme 
impressionist, though I must acknowledge that some 
of his splashes are very effective. Many paintings 
by Christian Krogh are in the museum. They are 
mostly of Scandinavian sailors, and are well done, 
but I was disappointed in Krogh's conception of Leif 
Ericsson discovering America. Leif and his men do 
not look sufficiently adventurous to sail uncharted 
seas; their faces are lacking in expression. Among 
the sculptures I cared most for were those of Stephen 
Sinding who is generally considered the leader in 
Norwegian plastic art. His bronzes of "A Slave 
Mother" and "Two People" are very fine. 

You have heard of the Gokstad ship, I am sure 
— the Viking ship which was dug from a burial 
mound near Christiania in 1880. This ship is on 
exhibition in a shed back of the University buildings 
in Christiania. Naturally, I was very much inter- 
ested in the thousand-year-old vessel and its con- 
tents. It is the typical sharp and narrow sea-going 
craft of the Viking Age, clinker-built, of oak, with 
seams caulked with yarn made from cow's hair. The 
length is about seventy-eight feet, and the width, 
seventeen. When the wind was favorable, a single, 
large square sail was hoisted; at other times the 
vessel was propelled by sixteen pairs of oars. In 
preparation for its last service as the sepulcher of 
a Norse chieftain, the ship was festively adorned 

Bergen and Chris tiania 195 

with a row of circular shields on either side. 

It happened that the entombing took place in 
potter's clay, which is plentiful near Christiania, and 
this acted as a perfect preservative for the whole 
of the vessel, except the ends, which projected above 
it. In the middle of the ship was the burial chamber 
with the bed on which the warrior was placed, clad 
in richly embroidered garments of silk and wool. 
Beside him were buried various weapons and uten- 
sils which might be of use on the voyage to Valhalla, 
or might prove handy after arrival. With the 
chieftain were also buried his pet peacock and about 
a half dozen dogs and a dozen horses, all of the 
animals undoubtedly being killed at the time of the 
burial, in order that their spirits might accompany 
that of their master to the Land of the Hereafter. 
This was the custom of the ancient Scandinavians. 

This expensive equipment of the dead was, to be 
sure, a great economic waste, but it was not so re- 
garded by the heathen Scandinavians. According 
to their view point, such provision as they made was 
merely humanitarian and decent. Only the most 
heartless or foolhardy would send forth their dead 
unequipped into the unknown; if pity or a sense of 
duty did not cause relatives or friends to follow the 
usual custom, fear of being haunted by the wronged 
ghost was pretty certain to force them into conform- 

In one of the cases along the walls of the exhibi- 
tion shed are some of the feathers of the peacock, 
still showing an iridescent gleam. And in another 
one are the bones of the warrior, which indicate 
that he was a man of great size. Physicians who 
have studied the remains have even discovered that 

,196 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

the man was afflicted with a disease of the bones, 
which may have been the cause of his death. 

The Gokstad ship was of special interest to me 
because it was the model for the Viking which 
attracted attention at the Columbian exposition at 
Chicago. The history of the Viking is so inter- 
esting that I cannot resist the temptation to tell you 
about it for fear that you may have somehow missed 
the story. Before the exposition, when preparations 
for it were under way, as was quite proper, the 
whole world — except the land of Scandinavia — was 
putting tremendous emphasis upon the discovery of 
Columbus. Naturally, the Scandinavians were not 
so enthusiastic, for, as every Scandinavian school 
child will tell you, had not Leif Ericsson discovered 
America nearly five centuries before Columbus was 
seized with his bright idea of sailing west to reach 
the east? Was it the fault of these sea rovers that 
the world was not yet ready to appreciate their 
discovery? Or that they themselves did not appre- 
ciate it? Had not they discovered it just the same? 
Did Columbus or his age appreciate his discovery? 
Thus challenged the children of the Vikings; and 
a discussion followed. 

Some of the members of the Columbian party, in- 
terested in the models of the caravels of Columbus 
which were to be sent to Chicago for the exposition, 
were so daring as to declare that the Northmen 
could not possibly have crossed the Atlantic in their 
little Viking boats; hence, they said, the saga story 
of Leif Ericsson's discovery was pure humbug. This 
helped fix the determination of the Norwegians to 
"show" the anti-Viking party. For there was the 
Gokstad ship unearthed but a few years before. And 

Bergen and Chris tiania 197 

from this vessel was modeled the Viking, exactly 
like this ship of the ninth century in size and pat- 
tern, except that the stern and bow were restored 
and finished off with a carved wooden dragon's head 
and tail, splendidly gilded, after the style of the 
ancient Scandinavian ships. Manned with a picked 
crew of Norwegian sailors, the Viking was sailed 
and rowed over the wide Atlantic. Once the vessel 
was reported foundering; at times the skeptical cap- 
tains of passing steamships offered to tow the Viking 
for the rest of the voyage ; but the champions of Leif 
Ericsson scorned to have their vessel towed across 
the ocean, as were the "Columbus washtubs," as the 
Viking's crew called the models of the Columbus 
caravels. Their ancestors had rowed and sailed 
across the Atlantic in craft of the Viking build, 
and they proposed to sail and row there in the 
Viking. And after a long, weary, mediaeval sort 
of voyage of six weeks, they arrived in triumph at 
New York Harbor. The Viking was propelled up 
the Hudson, but its captain submitted to be towed 
through the Erie Canal, after which it was again 
sailed and rowed the remainder of the distance to 
the Exposition City. It now stands in a shed be- 
hind the Field Columbian Museum in Jackson Park, 
where I saw it a couple of years ago. And its ancient 
prototype stands in a similar shed behind the Uni- 
versity of Christiania. Thus ended the Norwegian 

But, in itself, the Oseberg ship and its contents 
interested me much more than did the Gokstad ves- 
sel. The Oseberg ship was unearthed only in 1903. 
It, like the one from Gokstad, was discovered in 
a stratum of potter's clay near Christiania. Like 

198 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

the Gokstad vessel, it also had been used as a 
sepulchral ship. The recently-discovered vessel, 
however, is of quite a different style; it is flat-bot- 
tomed and richly carved and was evidently intended 
not as a swift-sailing vessel of commerce or war, but 
as a pleasure barge for use on the fiords. 

The Oseberg ship stands in a shed near that from 
Gokstad; but though the pamphlet which I bought 
at the door of the shed mentioned a rich treasure 
of contents as having been discovered in the vessel, 
I was disappointed not to find any of them near at 
hand, as were the contents of the other sepulchral 

Later, I went to the Historical Museum, which 
has a collection from prehistoric days of the same 
general character as those of Denmark and Sweden, 
proving conclusively that Danes, Swedes and Nor- 
wegians all are brethren. 

In the museum I met Professor G , of the 

University of Christiania, who is the greatest living 
authority upon Scandinavian archaeology, and had 
a most instructive talk with him upon various articles 
of special note in the prehistoric collection. When 
he found that I was as interested in dead heathen 
Scandinavians as I was in live Christian ones, Pro- 
fessor G told me that the contents of the Ose- 
berg ship would not be ready for exhibition to the 
public for some time, but several men were working 
on them under his supervision on the top floor. 
Would I care to examine them? Would I? I 
jumped at the chance; and we climbed to the top 

The Oseberg find had indeed been a rich one. The 
wife or daughter of a Norse cTiieftain had been 

Bergen and Chris Hania 199 

burled in the ship. With her were the remains of 
another woman, probably a serving maid, put to 
death in order that her mistress should not go forth 
upon the perilous way unattended. And about 
them were a variety of articles such as would be 
expected to gladden the heart of the noble lady in 
the Land of the Hereafter: spinning and weaving 
appliances, and balls of thread and wax; carved 
oaken chests; several beds, with down coverlets and 
pillows; tubs and pails and copper kettles; and even 
a millstone, the ghost of which was evidently in- 
tended to grind ghostly grist under the hands of the 
ghostly serving maid. But this distinguished Scan- 
dinavian lady had not been restricted to sea travel; 
in the boat had been placed a handsomely carved, 
four-wheeled carriage, and four sleds, also carved in 
elaborate pattern, two of them with grotesque heads 
at the four corners. The carcasses of a number of 
cattle as well as of horses and dogs were also buried 
with the vessel. The skeletons of two of the horses, 
all articulated and painted white and looking very 
spruce, were "hitched" to the ancient carved wagon. 

All of the horses, Professor G told me, were 

killed by being struck a blow at the base of the skull 
just back of the ears; and he called my attention 
to the broken vertebrae of the two renovated skele- 

Many of the things found in the Oseberg ship 
were restored and ready for exhibition, but the 
process of preparation is a long one and requires 
much care and patience. The objects made of wood 
when removed from the burial mound, were in some 
cases badly bent, and frequently broken into bits. 
The ship itself, for instance, was taken out in about 

200 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

two thousand pieces, but each tiny piece was prop- 
erly numbered; consequently perfect reconstruction 
was possible. The bent pieces were steamed back 
into shape, and then all of the woodwork had to be 
boiled in oil; and I do not know how many more 
processes they had to be put through before they 
were ready to be fitted together into their original 
shape. But upon looking at them in a casual manner 
one would never suspect that they were not as sound 
and whole as any other wooden objects that one 
would be likely to find in a museum. 

While we are on the subjects of sepulchers, I must 
tell you that I went to Vor Preiser's Cemetery this 
morning to see the graves of Henrik Ibsen and 
Bjornstjerne Bjornson. I am not in the habit of 
haunting cemeteries, but I felt moved thus to pay my 
respects to these two great Norwegians. There is 
an appropriateness in the tombs — if there ever can 
be an appropriateness in tombs — and they present 
as great a contrast as the temperaments of the two 
men. Bjornson is buried on a sunny green slope 
near a tall, graceful poplar tree. No memorial 
stone of any kind marks the grave; it is simply a 
great mound completely covered with flowers 
brightly blooming. Ibsen rests close at hand, but 
in a shady corner. Within a thick hedge is a black 
iron fence with polished black stone pillars at the 
corners; and within the fence is the grave, covered 
by a black stone slab simply marked with the name 
"Henrik Ibsen." A black iron wreath had been 
placed on the tomb. At the head of the grave is a 
tall pyramidal obelisk of polished black stone, on the 
front surface of which had been engraved in outline 
a strong, capable-looking hammer. It is a peculiarly 

Bergen and Chris tiania 201 

appropriate resting place for the iron-willed poet 
who devoted his life to smashing false idols, to 
diagnosing the diseases of society. 

Christiania is only about three hundred years old. 
But for centuries before King Christian IV of Den- 
mark built this modern capital of Norway, its site 
was guarded by the fortress of Akershuus, which 
still stands on the southern edge of the city. Aker- 
shuus is no longer a fortress of importance, but its 
ancient, conglomerate stone walls, in contrast to the 
modern appearance of the buildings of Christiana, 
are sure to attract the attention. Tht stronghold 
is still used for military purposes; one part of it is 
a military prison, and another is an arsenal; cannon 
are mounted on the ramparts, which command a 
view of Christiania Fiord; and the soldiers of Nor- 
way are on guard at the gateways. 

Visitors are shown through Akershuus every two 
hours, but I arrived too late for the twelve o'clock 
party, and shall not be able to wait for the next one 
as I am booked to sail at two on the King Haakon 
for Copenhagen. Consequently, I am sitting on the 
above-mentioned ramparts finishing this Christiania 
letter, preparatory to accounts of Danish green 
fields and pastures new. It is pleasant here, and 
the view of the fiord is lovely. I wish that the 
King Haakon would wait. 


copenhagen once more; castles in denmark 

Copenhagen, Denmark, 

September ii, 191 — 
My dear Cynthia: 

I have looped the loop, as you see — up through 
Sweden and down through Norway — and am again 
in Denmark's capital. The King Haakon left Chris- 
tiania on schedule time and had what I presume was 
a representative summer voyage to Copenhagen, a 
voyage which leads me to wonder what it would 
be like to make the passage in winter. The Cattegat, 
the strait separating Sweden from Denmark on the 
east, is notoriously rough, though; so my experience 
was not a complete surprise. 

By a great streak of good fortune I entirely es- 
caped being sea-sick. The boat sailed at two, and 
at first I sat on deck and watched the coast of Nor- 
way, which for a time we followed quite closely; 
by three o'clock, however, it seemed that nothing 
in the way of a view equal to the fiord coast would 
appear, so I decided that here was a good time to 
go to bed early and rest up; for I had been con- 
stantly on the go in Christiana. And down to bed 
I went. 

I must have promptly fallen into a doze, for the 
next thing I knew it was late in the afternoon, the 


Copenhagen Once More 203 

boat was rolling badly, and from fore and aft came 
sounds such as mark the last stages of sea-sickness. 
As time passed the sea grew rougher, and I felt 
more and more as one must feel who is strapped to 
the back of a bucking broncho. The sea-sick sounds 
increased in volume and number; and they were not 
restricted to the "gentler sex," but very frequently 
came from masculine throats. As I awakened at 
intervals through the night, I discovered that the 
history of the early evening was repeating itself. 
The two women and two children who shared a 
stateroom with me were desperately sick; but I was 
not a bit, for I stubbornly concentrated my thoughts 
on something pleasant and clove to my berth with 
my spinal column, like an abalone to a rock, fer- 
vently thanking my Stars and Stripes that for once 
I had known enough to go to bed when I was tired. 

Not till late the next morning, when I knew by 
the calm that we were past Flelsingborg and Elsi- 
nore and were in the quiet Oresund, did I venture to 
rise; and when I did, I dressed as soon as possible 
and hurried on deck into the fresh air. By that 
time most of my fellow passengers were on deck, too. 
They were a dismal-looking assemblage. Scarcely 
one looked as if he had escaped. All seemed to have 
been at least mildly ill: a few were pale and wan; 
more were ghastly white; and others — many others 
— were almost pea green in color. I thanked my 
Stars and Stripes again, and more fervently, when 
I saw them. 

It was much pleasanter to look at Copenhagen 
which we were approaching than at my fellow hu- 
mans. We were entering the harbor with a bright 
blue sky above and a twinkling, sparkling blue sea 

204 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

about us. The spires and towers of the quaint old 
Danish capital seemed to beckon invitingly; and 
again I felt as if I were returning home. It is thrice 
delightful to return to a place. But I am not sure 
that I should feel such pleasure in returning to 
Christiania or Stockholm; Copenhagen, as I have 
said, has an unusual degree of personality and charm. 

The Stork Fountain, near which I had my break- 
fast, seemed like an old friend. It is in the heart 
of the city, and appears to be a favorite landmark. 
Children, especially, enjoy playing around it under 
the spreading bronze wings of the storks; and it 
is appropriate that they should, for Hans Christian 
Andersen made the stork the children's bird, and 
particularly the bird of the Danish children. Indeed, 
reared as I was on Andersen's tales, I incline to 
think of the stork as the emblem of Danish child- 
hood — a sort of rival of the three rampant lions 
on the royal coat-of-arms, which is merely the em- 
blem of the Danish grown-ups. 

When I was in Copenhagen before, it had been 
arranged by Cousin Lars that I was to stay with 
him upon my return. He did not know just when 
I was due in Copenhagen, however, so, besides 
breakfasting, I attended to several errands and did 
some shopping before going to his home in the 
residential part of the city. 

I also explored the University of Copenhagen, 
which stands near Frue Kirke. The interior of the 
building is more pleasing than the smoke-begrimed 
exterior would lead one to suppose; the walls of 
the vestibule are tastefully decorated with frescoes, 
and good sculptures are placed here and there. Stu- 
dents in large numbers were in evidence, looking 

Copenhagen Once More 205 

very much like those whom I had seen in Sweden 
and Norway, except that the caps which they wore 
were marked by buttons of the red and white of 
Dannebrog, instead of blue and yellow, or red, white 
and blue. 

Cousin Lars was not at home when I reached 
his place, but his housekeeper was there to receive 
me, and he came in shortly after my arrival. Dur- 
ing my brief visit he made as much fuss over me 
as the proverbial hen does over the proverbial one 
chicken; the routine of the household was turned 
topsy-turvy in my interest, and I had a very pleasant, 
homey sort of time. I soon found that he had 
planned various excursions and parties for me, but 
most of the plans had to be dropped because of the 
very limited time I could stay in Copenhagen. 

Upon my arrival, I discovered on the table in 
my room various newspaper clippings which my 
cousin had made, with me in mind, while I was away 
in the North. The schools had opened during my 
absence and the clippings all had to do with the 
Danish educational system, of which democratic 
Cousin Lars is very proud. And he may well be, 
for I think that it is no exaggeration to say that the 
Danish public school system is the finest in Europe. 
From one of the clippings I learned that every child 
in the schools of Copenhagen is being taught to 
swim; from another, that excellent courses in exten- 
sion work are given in the evenings at sufficiently 
low prices to enable all those who wish to improve 
their educations to do so. 

These scraps of information roused in me a desire 
to visit some of the Danish schools; so Cousin Lars 
directed me to two near-by schools, one a boys' 

2o6 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

"gymnasium" and one a public grade school 
(folke skole). As in most European countries, the 
public schools are attended only by the children of 
the poor — the so-called "working classes." All who 
can possibly afford it send their children to private 
schools, lest they lose caste. The gymnasium is 
a private institution corresponding approximately to 
our high school. 

I went to the gymnasium first, where I visited 
a class of boys in modern European history. A 
young man who was also teacher of English was in 
charge. At the bell signal the two dozen boys 
marched in and remained standing beside their desks 
while the teacher introduced me. "You have all 
heard of a land called the Far West," said he in 
English. "We have with us this morning a lady 
from that far land who has come to observe your 
cleverness in history." The boys laughed, and at 
a sign from the teacher seated themselves. A boy 
in the front row handed me a text book and a copy 
of our old friend, Putzger's Atlas, which they used; 
and the lesson began. The subject was Napoleon's 
campaigns, and at times the discussion became even 
exciting. But the order in the room was unspeak- 
able; it was nil. The boys — quite a number of 
them — visited with each other, and talked in whis- 
pers and undertones together instead of attending to 
their lessons. Frequently the master had difficulty 
in making himself heard above the noise, and in 
hearing the students who were reciting. At least 
a half dozen times while I was there he produced 
a slight lull by "Sh-Sh," but that was all; he seemed 
quite used to just that degree of inattention and dis- 
order and did not appear to mind that a visitor was 

Copenhagen Once More 207 

there taking It all In. The teaching, however, was 
remarkably good, everything considered, and the 
boys who were called upon to recite appeared well 
prepared. After all, order is only a minor point. 
Unfortunatelv I had to leave before the end of the 
period. When I rose to go, the class also rose as 
one boy, and remained standing while I took my 
leave and made my exit. 

Next I went to visit a public school. It was recess 
when I arrived, and I found the boys and girls in 
the large yards at the back of the building, playing 
In the drizzling rain, under the supervision of sev- 
eral teachers. The bell rang almost immediately, 
and the children marched In. I had expressed to 
the principal a desire to visit one of the classes — 
I did not care which — and presently was introduced 
to a teacher who asked me to visit his beginning 
class in English. I had for the time forgotten that 
English was taught In the grades In Denmark, and 
was very glad of a chance to see it done. The class 
consisted of twenty-two little boys and girls averag- 
ing about eleven years of age. All were healthy, 
happy little children, clean, and neatly dressed, 
though children of the poor. To my relief, the 
order here was perfect. The children paid strict 
attention to business. The lesson was conducted 
entirely in English and was admirably taught and 
admirably learned; the teacher was a master in 
his profession. He seemed fond of the work and 
fond of every one of his flock. His evident success 
helps me to the conviction that there are men who 
would make first class primary teachers, even for 
the tiny beginners, the orthodox theory to the con- 
trary notwithstanding. It was a distinct pleasure 

2o8 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

to me to witness those little Danish children reading, 
writing, and speaking my native tongue. Teacher 
as well as pupils spoke with an accent, but the pro- 
nunciation was remarkably good. Two or three 
times, however, the teacher turned to me to inquire, 
"Can you understand our English?" And when I 
replied that it was perfectly clear to me, the chil- 
dren looked pleased. I shortly learned that I was 
not to be a mere auditor. When the first part of the 
lesson had been covered, the teacher asked me 
whether I would read it for the children in order 
that they might hear a pronunciation free from 
accent. I was delighted at the chance, so I rose and 
the children held their breaths while I read: 

"Work while you work, and play while you play, 
That is the way to be happy and gay," 

and other friendly maxims of my childhood days. 
When I had finished, a general smile of satisfaction 
spread over the class. The children had evidently 
measured their pronunciation against mine and had 
decided that there was not so great a difference 
after all. When they had worked through another 
translation, I again read for them; and again the 
children smiled their pleasure. And so we alternated 
until it was time for me to go. When I rose there 
was a little rustle as of a flock of birds rising in 
the air; and every little child was on his feet; and 
every one smiled a farewell as I left the room. I 
should have loved to borrow the class to teach for 
a while. 

The teacher thanked me heartily for my demon- 
stration of English pronunciation and gave me a 

Copenhagen Once More 209 

most cordial invitation to visit his advanced course 
in English. Last term, he said, two English ladies 
had visited^ this class and had read for the children, 
thus greatly stimulating their interest in the language. 
Verily, everything is grist that comes to that man's 

My dip into the educational system of Denmark 
was finished off by a visit to the school museum, 
which impressed me as being unique. The museum 
contains every sort of device to help the teacher — 
models, charts, pictures, natural history specimens. 
The prices are plainly marked on the ''helps" but 
the objects are not for sale; they are merely on 
exhibition for the benefit of the teacher who is try- 
ing to keep up to date in her methods. The devices 
can be obtained at the school supply shops. An 
excellent teachers' library is housed in the museum 
also. And trained educators are on hand to answer 
questions and to give advice to all perplexed peda- 

The idea of having a museum for the inspiration 
of teachers seemed to me an excellent one, but I 
supposed it something peculiar to Denmark until 
the chief director, who spake excellent English, In- 
formed me that we had one in my own country — at 
St. Louis, Missouri. The director also told me sev- 
eral things about the schools of Denmark. The 
caste system which formerly worked such hardships 
against the children of the poor, he said, is break- 
ing down; and now the children can pass from the 
public schools to the gymnasium, which prepares for 
the University; and promising students who can not 
afford to pay tuition are granted scholarships. There 
is no opposition to married women's teaching in the 

2IO Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

public schools ; and if they have children of their own, 
it is rather assumed that they make better teachers 
than unmarried ones. The salaries of public school 
teachers in Denmark seem to compare favorably 
with those in the Far West, in view of the difference 
in the cost of living. After a certain number of 
years of service all teachers are retired upon a pen- 
sion; and teachers in the country have always a 
farm which they work, thus having a source of in- 
come besides their salaries. 

The school system of the Scandinavian countries, 
as I have indicated, is very fine; and it is very effec- 
tive. By it the people are educated both mentally 
and physically; compulsory education laws exist and 
are enforced; the amount of illiteracy has been re- 
duced to something less than one per cent. Elemen- 
tary education is free, and opportunities of various 
sorts for higher education are given to all at but 
little cost. Much emphasis is placed upon practical 
as well as "academic" studies; one finds in the lower 
schools careful training in hygiene and gymnastics, 
cooking, sewing and sloyd. 

The Scandinavian countries are in' the forefront in 
their adoption of all modern educational devices and 
agencies; and they lead the world in their system 
of people's high schools (folkehojskoler), which 
originated in Denmark, but have been introduced 
into the other Scandinavian lands. Bishop Grundt- 
vig, who founded the first school of the kind in 1844, 
worked upon the belief that people gain most good 
from education acquired after the age of eighteen. 
And the people's high schools as they now exist 
are for adults between the ages of eighteen and 
thirty. They are particularly for country dwellers. 

Copenhagen Once More 211 

There are five-month winter terms for men and three- 
month summer terms for women. The hving ex- 
penses and tuition combined are surprisingly slight 
— only about ten dollars per month. No entrance 
examinations exist, and no final examinations. Many 
subjects of study are offered, and great freedom is 
permitted the students in their selection. These 
people's high schools are undoubtedly tremendously 
important factors in raising the standard of Scan- 
dinavian civilization. . 

The evening following my visit to the school mu- 
seum Cousin Lars and I went to the Tivoli, the 
famous amusement park where high and low in 
Denmark play; for he said that not to see the Tivoli 
was not to understand Copenhagen. The admission 
fee is only fifty ore, or about thirteen cents, for 
adults and twenty-five for children, hence there are 
very few whose poverty would shut them out from 
a chance for relaxation and enjoyment. The place, 
which was founded by George Carstensen as early 
as 1843, contains all sorts of arrangements and de- 
vices for the amusement, pleasure, and instruction 
of the people of Copenhagen. Under the trees are 
tables and benches where refreshments are served, 
and there are several good restaurants close at hand. 
A large aquarium and a zoo contribute equally to 
the pleasure of the children and the grown-ups. The 
buildings are in oriental style and are fitted with ar- 
rangements for thousands of colored electric lights, 
which are turned on only upon special festive occa- 
sions. The night of our visit was just an ordinary oc- 
casion, but the park was thronged with great crowds. 
While the young people were occupied at the merry- 
go-round, shooting galleries and other more exciting 

212 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

and adventurous places, the parents stood or sat 
around and watched the pantomime play or listened 
to the various bands. One of these bands was made 
up of several dozen men who played the national 
and popular airs, and played them well. The Scan- 
dinavians are a musical people; Scandinavia gave 
the world Jenny Lind, Christine Nilsson and Ed- 
vard Grieg, you know. 

Yesterday was Sunday, and it was arranged that 
I was to go on a tour of Danish country castles in 
the part of Seeland which is to the north of Copen- 
hagen. As Cousin Lars had been over the same 
route only a couple of weeks before, he decided not 
to go. The boys were to accompany me instead. 
The "boys" are Cousin Lars's two sons; Waldemar 
is sufficiently grown up to be grizzled at the temples, 
and Jens has a daughter who is old enough to have 
the whooping cough and thus keep her mother at 
home for the day; nevertheless Cousin Lars calls 
them "the boys," and so do L Yesterday, at least, 
the two threw dull care away and acted in a very 
juvenile manner. The boys have homes of their 
own, but it was decided that we were all to have 
breakfast together in order to have an early start; 
however, through a misunderstanding, Jens took 
breakfast at home, and Waldemar was late in ar- 
riving; consequently, we came very near missing the 
train. As it was, we simply pelted down the three 
or four blocks to the station, where the train stood 
with snorting engine ready to move out. Jens had 
got a late start too, but was already at the station 
gate. He waved the tickets when he saw us rush 
panting up, called out, "Come on," and climbed 
aboard. We tumbled into the starting car just in 

Copenhagen Once More 213 

time to be taken along. 

Through an ideal country landscape we jour- 
neyed — a landscape which reminded me strongly of 
Bornholm — to the Httle town of Hillerod. Here 
we left the train and walked about a mile to Fred- 
eriksborg Castle, which is the finest sample of early 
Danish Renaissance architecture. The castle is sit- 
uated in a lake on three islands and has wide en- 
circling walls and bridges and moats and towers, 
just as the castle of one's dreams should have. The 
building was erected by Frederick II, in 1562, but 
various parts of it have been burned since, and 
the only remains of the original structure are two 
round towers bearing the date of erection and the 
King's motto, "My trust is in God alone," in Ger- 
man. Those were the days of German influence in 
Denmark. Christian IV, the great Renaissance 
builder, erected the fine building of which the pres- 
ent one is largely a restoration; and it was the favor- 
ite residence of this king and of his successors for 
many generations. In 1859 ^ terrible fire destroyed 
Christian's castle but by means of government con- 
tributions and private subscriptions it was promptly 
rebuilt. Captain J. C. Jacobsen, "Ph. D., Brewer," 
in particular, whom I have mentioned before in con- 
nection with Copenhagen art museums, contributed 
large sums toward the work of restoration. His 
money paid for the fine Neptune fountain in the 
outer court, erected to replace the one which was 
stolen and carried off by the Swedes in the stirring 
days of 1658. 

In 1877 Captain Jacobsen secured permission 
from King Christian IX to found a museum of na- 
tional history in the castle. The expenses of the up- 

214 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

keep and development of the museum are met by 
an endowment fund established by the founder and 
by a share of the annual income from the Carlsberg 

After wandering about the courts for a while, the 
boys and I entered the castle to explore. Naturally, 
the early and obscure ages of Danish history are 
chiefly strung together with representations of Dan- 
ish royalty, and the events — to a greater or less de- 
gree legendary — associated with their reigns, while 
the later periods are more and more given over to 
the work of the Danish people. In the vestibule, 
which contains the earliest exhibit, are statues of 
King Gorm the Old, who reunited under one crown 
all of the Danish lands, and Queen Thyra. This 
royal couple of the ninth century combined the old 
and the new, the dying heathen religion and the 
growing Christianity; Thyra was a Christian, and 
through her influence Gorm, who still worshiped 
the gods of his fathers, was induced to permit the 
preaching of the Christian missionaries. In the ves- 
tibule with the statues are casts of the two rune 
stones which marked the graves of the king and 

Not far from these relics of Gorm and Thyra Is 
a very interesting painted frieze depicting the Eng- 
lish chapter of Danish history — or the Danish chap- 
ter of English — including a representation of King 
Canute on his throne on the strand, rebuking his 
flatterers after he has proved to them that in spite 
of his commands the waves advance. Though only 
remotely connected with Danish history, there is 
also a fine copy of the famous Bayeux tapestry rep- 
resenting the Norman conquest of England in 1066. 

Copenhagen Once More 215 

In fact, the museum is somewhat unique in the num- 
ber of copies and models of famous things and 
places which it contains. There are models of all 
of the buildings of any note, I think, in Denmark, 
not omitting Hammershus Castle and Osterlars 
Church in Httle old Bornholm; and the Dannevirke 
with the wall of Thyra Dannebod, built across the 
lower part of the peninsula of Jutland to keep out 
the southern enemy, is there too. 

We passed through a bewildering succession of 
rooms containing many reminders of Denmark's 
past, over which we were anxious to linger ; but there 
was little time, so we moved on. In the hunters' 
hall, as the boys insisted on calling it — it was called 
the "Knights' Room" in the guide book — we did 
linger a little. Around the wall is a stucco frieze 
with bas-relief figures of deer, foxes, hares and other 
animals of the chase; and the curious thing about 
it was that the antlers of the stags are bona fide 
antlers. Since these are darker in color than the 
remainder of the deer, the effect is somewhat weird. 
The old fenders and grates are still in position in 
the black marble fire-place; but the gallery from 
which the players of King Christian's time dispensed 
music while the king and his courtiers made merry 
below is no more to be seen. 

Fredericksborg Castle is a great national gallery, 
as well as a museum in the ordinary sense. Nat- 
urally, there are many paintings and "graven 
images" of Danish royalty, from the tolerant 
heathen, Gorm the Old, whom I have already men- 
tioned, down to the late King Christian IX. There 
are several pictures of this last king. In one of 
these he is represented as visiting Iceland in 1874; 

2i6 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

m another he is portrayed as receiving in audience 
at Amalienberg Palace in Copenhagen the delegation 
from the Norwegian parliament announcing the elec- 
tion of Haakon VII as king of Norway. The Nor- 
wegians, you will remember, when they finally were 
able to set up an independent establishment, had to 
adopt a king. Haakon of Norway Is a son of Chris- 
tian IX. 

But the great Danes who never wore kingly crowns 
or sat upon the ancient throne of Denmark are not 
forgotten; and the smaller ones who served their 
day and country in time of war or peace also have 
a place — even to "J. C. Jacobsen, Ph. D., Captain, 
Founder of the Carlsberg Fund." Saxo Grammatl- 
cus, the first Danish historian, who lived in the credu- 
lous days of the twelfth century, is there in sculpture ; 
and keeping company with him is a statue of Snorre 
Sturlason, the Icelandic historian of the same period, 
to whom we are Indebted for the "Younger Edda," 
and the "Heimskringla," the annals of the early kings 
of Norway. I have no reason to believe, however, 
that either of these sat for their portraits, any more 
than did King Gorm and Queen Thyra. In the 
gallery are also portraits of Hans Christian Ander- 
sen, the sage with the child's heart; Niels Steensen, 
the great anatomist and geologist; Ludwig Holberg, 
the founder of Danish literature; Niels FInsen, the 
great physician and humanitarian; Lieutenant- 
Colonel Dalgas, founder of the Society for the Cul- 
tivation of the Danish Heaths, through whose efforts 
Denmark has recovered from the heather waste 
and put under cultivation even more land than was 
stolen from her by the Germans in 1864. Adam 
Oehlenschlager, the greatest Danish poet, is repre- 

Copenhagen Once More 217 

sented by both painting and bust. He was to Den- 
mark what Tegner was to Sweden. Indeed, to some 
extent Tegner was a disciple of Oehlenschlager. In 
the room reserved for this poet is the furniture used 
by him; also manuscripts, sketch books, spectacles 
and watches which belonged to him; and drawings 
in lead pencil of his two children, done by himself- 
Upon the wall is the wreath with which he was 
crowned by Tegner in the cathedral of Lund. 

The chapel of the castle, in which six Danish 
kings have been crowned, is very elaborately and 
richly decorated with much of gilding and stucco 
and carving and many religious paintings. And in 
it is a gem of a pulpit in ebony and silver. The 
organ now used is of German manufacture and is 
three hundred years old. Its keys are of ivory, very 
thick, and are partially covered with engraved sil- 
ver plates. The instrument was given to King 
Christian IV by his German brother-in-law. 

After leaving the chapel we spent some time in 
the park again. The grass was wonderfully green 
yesterday under the summer sunshine; and there 
was something peculiarly homelike and cosy about 
the rounded masses of the dark green trees. It 
seemed as natural to be on this excursion connected 
with the castles of Denmark as it was to go off to 
spend the day among the mountains of my Far West 
when I was a child. An open-air Sunday appears 
also to appeal especially to the Danes, for there 
were great numbers of happy, frank-faced people 
sitting or walking about the grounds, among the 
trees, or loitering upon the picturesque arched 

After a time we went to the pavilion where we 

2i8 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

had luncheon under the trees, in view of the fine old 
towers of Frederiksborg. Then we drove in a 
drosky through the beautiful National Forest to 
Fredensborg Castle, which was built in commemora- 
tion of peace between Denmark and Sweden 
("Fred" — pronounced with a long e — means peace 
In Danish) . This is situated upon the beautiful lake, 
Esrom So, and is the autumnal residence of the Dan- 
ish royal family. It is by no means as pretentious 
as Frederiksborg, but it is pleasant. The buildings 
are white and have a large octagonal court in front. 
The interior is richly furnished; there are the usual 
frescoes and tapestries, rich brocades, gold leaf and 
carvings. The housekeeper showed us through the 
rooms. She seemed particularly proud of the din- 
ing room, furnished in beautiful blue tints, and pos- 
sessed of a ceiling of remarkable height. 

One room, called the "Garden Room," is lighted 
with many great windows which overlook a garden 
of the French style, containing a number of marble 
statues and marble vases thrown into sharp relief 
against smooth-cut lawns and trim flower beds. But 
I have always felt that there is som,ething painfully 
incongruous about a carved marble vase with carved 
marble flowers out in a garden filled with Nature's 
own floral triumphs; and white marble statues in 
such a setting are suggestive of graveyards and 
ghosts. We cared much more for the broad park 
of the Castle of Peace; it is the most beautiful park 
that I have ever seen. Spreading trees in soft, curv- 
ing masses are scattered over the rolling grassy 
slopes in a manner charming indeed; but the real 
glory of the park is the avenues lined with gigantic 
Danish beeches, the branches meeting overhead. To 

Copenhagen Once More 219 

such trees can the adjective "noble" be well applied. 
The only similar avenues that I know of in our own 
land are those shaded by great plane trees on the 
Capitol grounds at Washington. But at Fredens- 
borg there are wonderful vistas that Washington 
does not possess. Through one leafy arcade we 
caught a glimpse of a white-winged yacht sailing on 
the blue surface of the lake and outlined against the 
bluer summer sky; at the end of another avenue 
were the towers of Frederiksborg Castle looming 
above the clustering trees. I was quite moved by 
the perfection of the varied scenery, and wandered 
about the gardens of the Castle of Peace in the 
hope of absorbing something lasting from it all. 

"In Denmark there lies a castle named Kron- 
borg," wrote Hans Christian Andersen in his tale of 
"Holger Danske," which I read and loved as a 
child. But as a child I only dreamed of grand old 
Kronborg; yesterday I saw the castle of my dreams. 
As all lovers of Shakespeare know, it is at the town 
of Elsinore — called by the Danes Helsingor — and 
is situated at the entrance to Oresund. This guard- 
ian of the Sound was built by Frederick II in the 
last part of the sixteenth century. Three broad red 
brick walls surround the old fortress, and from be- 
tween the ancient bricks sturdy young trees have 
sprouted; a fair-sized young oak has also forced its 
way through the iron-barred window of the inner 

Kronborg is still a fortress and still guards the 
Sound, but not as jealously as of yore; for more 
than a century the cannon of the castle have boomed 
only in friendly greeting to passing vessels. As An- 
dersen put it, this is the cannon's way of saying 

220 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

''Good-day" and 'Thank you." 

First we explored the interior of the inner wall 
of the castle, following a droll old guard who car- 
ried a lighted torch. In the seventeenth century 
when the Swedes overran Denmark they got con- 
trol of the castle and held it for some time. The 
Swedish general used one of the large rooms as his 
office. In another room still stands the great cook- 
ing tank — heated by means of a fireplace in the wall 
— in which could be prepared food enough for three 
thousand men at one time. Near at hand are man- 
ger-like bins of stone, in which the invaders stored 
their food supply. In the bottom of one of these 
receptacles were some patches of white and yellow 
plaster which had fallen from the wall above. These 
the Danish guard solemnly declared, with a tiny 
twinkle in his eye, were Swedish fried eggs left in 
the hurry of the final Swedish departure from Kron- 
borg. Below the floor containing the kitchens and 
store rooms are mostly dungeons- — terrible, dark, 
airless, dripping dungeons — many of them V-shaped 
with places for iron gates which were graduated in 
size so as to make the inclosures smaller and smaller, 
finally becoming mere cages in which the poor im- 
prisoned wretches had not sufficient space to lie 

Within the wall near the entrance is a rough 
white statue of Holger Danske, the legendary hero 
of Denmark, leaning upon his sword. I expected to 
find Holger Danske there, for Hans Christian An- 
dersen had said that he was to be found, in Kron- 
borg "in the deep, dark cellar where nobody goes." 
"He sleeps and dreams," explained Andersen, "but 
in his dreams he sees everything that happens up 








Copenhagen Once More 221 

here in Denmark. Every Christmas Eve comes an 
angel, and tells him that what he has dreamed is 
right and that he may go to sleep in quiet, for that 
Denmark is not yet in any real danger; but when 
once such a danger comes, then old Holger Danske 
will rouse himself! . . . Then he will come forth 
and strike, so that it shall be heard in all the coun- 
tries in the world." 

For a time, in my skeptical growing-up years, I 
somewhat lost faith in this assurance of the Danish 
writer; for then I learned how Germany took from 
little Denmark the duchy of Schleswig-Holstein be- 
cause the Danes were helpless to prevent; but now 
I know, "being old," that, as Andersen says, "there 
is faith in Holger Danske." And I recently noticed 
in re-reading the story, that Andersen emphasizes 
the fact that there is another strength besides the 
power that lies in the sword, and that '^Holger 
Danske may come in many forms'' ! I missed that 
point as a child, or had forgotten it since leaving 
childhood behind. 

"Holger Danske" is the strong, courageous spirit 
of the people of Denmark, which has never been 
shown more fully than in the last half century. In 
this period the Danes have shown remarkable co- 
operative strength; they have conquered the heath 
lands, developed their magnificent public-school sys- 
tem, and put their country in spick and span shape 

I soon had my fill of dungeons and things under- 
ground generally, so we went to the art gallery. 
Here, as one would expect, is a statue of Shakes- 
peare. And here are many paintings. Some of 
these are second-rate works of "old masters," 

222 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

and are very dark and ancient and venerable in ap- 
pearance. I fear, Cynthia, that you would have 
thought it horribly improper of me not to "rave" 
over them, especially the dingy, swarthy, old ones; 
but I could not — they were so ugly ! And my cous- 
ins showed less reverence than I; Waldemar passed 
them by with great scorn, announcing that he would 
not pick them up from the roadside. We liked the 
national portraits best, not because we considered 
them better artistically — I am sure that you would 
have pronounced them inferior to the old masters — 
but because of their historical interest. 

In a tower room was a portrait of "Caroline 
Mathilde," and a placard announced that in this 
room the lady of that name had been imprisoned. I 
could not muster up enough Danish historical data 
to remember who Caroline Mathilde was; so I 
turned to the boys and inquired. Waldemar did not 
know, but during the whole day he had shown a 
tremendous sense of responsibility whenever I asked 
a question, and he now left no stone unturned in his 
efforts to find the answer. 

He first tried Jens with, "You have been to school 
since I. Don't you know who Caroline Mathilde 

But Jens did not possess the desired information. 
The historical characters of a thousand years must 
be quite a "chore" to remember. Then, for want of 
better material, Waldemar pounced upon a tiny 
scrap of a girl — the child of the woman who sold 
post cards at the entrance to the gallery — and re- 
peated, "Who was Caroline Mathilde?" 

"I don't know," said the child. 

Waldemar looked down at the mite with a Phari- 

Copenhagen Once More 223 

salcal air. ''What! Don't you know who was her 

Now, wasn't that last just like a man? "John 
Brown and wife!" John Brown and poodle dog! 
It sounded particularly ridiculous, however, applied 
to the mysterious lady of the tower — as Waldemar 
meant that it should.' 

Carohne Mathilde, as I found when I went to 
look her up, was a sister of King George III of 
England. When a mere child she was married to 
the dissipated idiot, King Christian VII of Den- 
mark. Naturally, she found enduring an idiot hus- 
band a rather monotonous undertaking, and looked 
for diversions, with the usual consequences. Count 
Struensee, the Danish privy councillor, whose name 
the Queen's enemies had mentioned in connection 
with her own, was put to death by order of the 
King, but Caroline Mathilde, partly because of her 
relation to the British Crown, was merely im- 
prisoned, part of the time at Kronborg. 

In the chapel of the Kronborg castle, the boys 
told me, horses were stalled, in the days of Swedish 
occupation; but now the chapel is again a chapel, 
tiny, but very interesting. The royal pew, carved 
and painted in all of the colors of the rainbow, is in 
the gallery. In the rear of the room are the old 
seats formerly occupied by slaves. The altar is 
finely carved. The inscriptions about the room are 
in German, for German was the court language at 
the time of the restoration of the chapel. 

As the sun was setting, we climbed to the top of 
one of the tall towers to gaze over land and sea. It 
was a long climb up a winding stair, but the view 
was lovely. Down in the court at our feet the sol- 

2 24 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

diers were lining up to march in to supper; around 
about us was the landscape which had gladdened my 
heart earlier in the day; across the narrow Sound 
was Helsingborg on the Swedish coast, looming up, 
an old friend, with Karnan and other large build- 
ings plainly visible. A few weeks before, I had 
viewed Kronborg from Karnan; now I had a view 
of Karnan from Kronborg. And beyond Karnan 
and Helsingborg was a rare sunset sky brilliantly 
colored, the glory of which the calm waters of the 
Sound reflected. 

As it was dinner time, the boys were fearful that 
I might be in a starving condition, for so far that 
day I had had only three meals — one less than the 
usual number; consequently, from the tower we de- 
scended to a restaurant in Helsingor and had din- 
ner to the accompaniment of an unusually fine band. 
Then we walked down the narrow, crooked streets 
— sidewalks were a mere incident — to a park in 
which, on a knoll in a lonely corner under a clump 
of shade trees, was a great mound of rocks. A 
rough slab stuck in the top bore the words "Ham-, 
let's Grave." The whole thing was of glaringly 
recent erection. It was put there in self-defense, I 
was told, by the owner of the land. People of ig- 
norance were so insistent that Hamlet's grave must 
be somewhere about and were so constantly asking 
to be directed to it that, in order to save time and 
annoyance, this "grave" was manufactured and con- 
spicuously marked. People who love to be fooled 
take much satisfaction in it; those who have under- 
standing know that it is a joke. 

The grave lies on the way to Marienlyst, a fash- 
ionable and famous summer resort, for which we 

Copenhagen Once More 225 

were bound. Marlenlyst is so near to Kronborg 
that we walked. In the pleasant park of Marlen- 
lyst are two interesting bronze statues — Hamlet, 
Prince of Denmark, a slender, youthful figure; and 
Holger Danske, a fine old warrior with a keen, 
strong, kindly face. The face met my ideas of how 
Holger Danske should be represented. It reflected 
the character and intellect of the Danish people, just 
as the great muscular arms resting on the broad flat 
sword blade represented their healthy physical 
strength. The rough representation of Holger the 
Dane which I saw in the walls of Kronborg is evi- 
dently a plaster cast of this fine bronze piece. The 
cast had been placed at Kronborg to prevent the 
disappointment of visitors who, like myself, made 
the acquaintance of Holger Danske in the days of 
their childhood through dear Hans Christian Ander- 
sen's solemn assurance that at Kronborg "Holger 
Danske sits in the deep dark cellar, where nobody 

We walked along the beach at Marienlyst and 
watched the waves roll in and break on the strand 
until the lights began to twinkle upon the Swedish 
coast; then we took the train for home. For part 
of the way we rode on a steam train of two-story 
cars, such as I had never seen before. For the ad- 
venture of it, I wanted to ride upstairs, and after 
the train had started we climbed to the second floor 
by means of a narrow iron staircase at the end of 
the car. The climb was, for me, rather a perilous 
undertaking, and was the only adventurous element 
connected with the ride on top. "On top" suggests 
open air and is, therefore, misleading; there was 
really a second story, or, perhaps, it is better to call 

226 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

it a half story, for the room at the top was decid- 
edly low-ceiled; we had to duck our heads when we 
walked to seats. But as I was mortally afraid that 
I should fall from the little iron stairway to my de- 
struction if I attempted to descend while the car 
was in motion, we remained where we were until 
we reached Copenhagen, which we did at eleven 

Yesterday was a large, beautiful day, crammed 
full of pleasant memories. Some time again I shall 
return to Denmark and spend just such another sum- 
mer day among the Danish castles. But now I must 
soon leave quaint old Copenhagen, the "boys," and 
my kind Cousin Lars. A train for Roskilde leaves 
Copenhagen at ten o'clock, and I depart on it; for 
summer vacations must end. 


roskilde and odense ; good-by to scandinavia 

Odense, Denmark, 
September 14, 191 — 
My dear Cynthia: 

You perhaps remember that in my first letter to 
you after reaching Copenhagen I mentioned Ros- 
kilde. I stopped there for a short time on my way 
here on Monday. The place, though now only a 
small provincial town of but nine thousand inhabi- 
tants, has had an eventful and interesting past. In 
the tenth century Harold Bluetooth, son of Gorm 
the Old, and grandfather of Canute the Great, who 
ruled England, made the place his capital and built 
a cathedral there. And it remained the capital for 
five hundred years — until it was supplanted by Co- 

I stopped off at Roskilde primarily to see the 
cathedral, but I enjoyed poking about the narrow, 
crooked streets between the low-built, tile-roofed 
houses. As in practically every other European 
town, the market-place of Roskilde is centrally 
situated. I passed it early in the forenoon on my 
way from the station. A sale of livestock was in 
progress. Horses were being trotted for the benefit 
of prospective buyers, pigs were squealing, cattle 
were lowing; and men were sealing bargains for the 
transfer of animals by the customary handshake. 

The original Roskilde cathedral erected by Har- 


228 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

old Bluetooth was of wood, but In the eleventh cen- 
tury this was replaced by a larger building of lime- 
stone ; and about two centuries later the brick build- 
ing, some fragments of which are incorporated in 
the present beautiful cathedral, was erected on the 
site of the limestone one. The present building is 
the pride of Roskilde. It is a great red-brick pile, 
quaintly beautiful, with copper roofs discolored a 
bluish green, and with sharp, oddly-shaped twin 
towers. This cathedral is the Westminster Abbey 
of Denmark; more than thirty Danish sovereigns, 
including Harold Bluetooth, are buried within its 

When the ancient limestone building was pulled 
down, the bones of the founders and benefactors of 
the cathedral during its early years were removed 
and immured in the new structure; and two cen- 
turies later, in 1521, the bishop Lage Urne had 
their effigies, dressed in the style of his period, 
placed on the pillars. There they are as the artist 
of the time conceived them to have looked: Harold 
Bluetooth, who built the wooden cathedral; Bishop 
William, who began the erection of the limestone 
building; King Svend, who, in order to atone for 
having killed some men in the cathedral, gave to the 
bishopric a large tract of territory; and his mother, 
Estrid, or Margarethe, sister of Canute the Great, 
who also gave rich gifts to the church. 

The most famous tomb in the cathedral, however, 
is that of the great Queen Margaret, whose remains 
rest in a black marble coffin behind the high altar. 
On the lid of the coffin is an effigy of the queen in 
alabaster — a purely imaginary likeness, made by a 
foreign artist who had never seen the queen. The 

Roskilde and Odense 229 

figure is a beautiful one, though, with pure and de- 
termined features. The queen's hair lies in a thick 
braid around her forehead, and a veil and a crown 
are upon her head; around the waist of her graceful 
robe is a girdle with pendulous bells. Behind the 
head of the queen is a splendid canopy bearing the 
arms of the Scandinavian Union, with a Latin in- 
scription around its margin which, being inter- 
preted, reads: "A, D. 141 2, on the day of the Apos- 
tles Simon and Judas died the illustrious Princess, 
Lady Margaret, once Queen of Denmark, Sweden 
and Norway, but in the following year on the 4th of 
July, she was buried here. As posterity is not able 
to honor her thus as she has deserved, this work has 
been constructed in memory of her at the expense of 
Erik, our present King, 1423." The Eric men- 
tioned was Margaret's grand-nephew, Eric of Pom- 
erania, who succeeded the great queen. 

The tombs of some of the Christians and Fred- 
ericks are also pretty elaborate; and they furnish 
varied information about the reigns of these rulers. 
Christian IV is buried in a chapel named for him, 
decorated with frescoes of allegorical figures and 
historical scenes illustrating the character and life of 
the king. The coffin itself is of oak covered with 
black velvet decorated with silver plates. On the 
lid lies the King's sword and a crucifix. This was 
the King Christian who "stood by the lofty mast, in 
mist and smoke," you will remember. One of the 
paintings on the chapel wall represents him in his 
brave stand in the battle of the Baltic. 

Frederick IV, who lived in a more ornate age, has 
a great marble sarcophagus done in rich rococo style. 
On the lid is a figure of Fame bearing a medallion 

230 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

with the king's portrait, and publishing his name by 
sound of trombone; at the head sits the figure of a 
woman, with a burning heart, meant to represent the 
people's love for their king; at the foot is an old 
man, Father Time in new guise, with a tablet on 
which is written: "King Frederick died 1730." On 
the sides are historical illustrations — victories of war 
on land and sea; the freeing of the serfs; the es- 
tablishment of the "land militia"; the founding of 
the village schools. 

Frederick VII is buried in an oak coffin orna- 
mented with bronze. The surface is covered with 
allegorical figures. One of these — that on the right 
hand — represents the king's motto: "The people's 
love is my strength," and that on the left, Denmark 
mourning his death. Upon the lid of the coffin I 
noticed two silver wreaths and a gold one — the last 
presented by Danish women. And well might the 
people of Denmark cherish this Frederick's memory, 
for it was during his reign that the land was given a 
constitutional government; and well might they 
mourn his death, for his death without an heir led 
to bitter war and to the loss of the duchies of 
Schleswig-Holstein to Germany. 

In striking contrast to the elaborate tombs of 
their predecessors are the plain oak coffins of the 
late Christian IX and his queen, Louisa. Beside 
Christian's coffin is a silver wreath sent by the Danes 
of America. The king was their king during child- 
hood and youth, until they adopted a new land; so 
the Danes of America had a friendly place in their 
hearts for him. 

Most of the earlier Danish rulers — those of the 
twelfth, thirteenth and fourteenth centuries — are 

Roskilde and Odense 231 

buried in the old convent church of Ringsted. And 
in the convent church of Soro, which is near at hand, 
sleeps the great warrior bishop Absalon, founder 
of Copenhagen. 

My next destination after leaving Roskilde was 
Odense, which is a corruption of Odins O, the Dan- 
ish for Odin's Island. In the heathen days the place 
was a favorite with the Father God, it seems. But 
the present-day Odense is a thriving town of about 
forty thousand, the third town in size in Denmark. 
It is the metropolis of the large island of Fyen, or 
Fiinen, which is separated by the Little Belt from the 
peninsula of Jutland on the west, and by the Great 
Belt, from the island of Seeland on the east. Odense 
is a very lovable old place, possessing the air of dig- 
nity and wisdom frequently associated with ancient 
things; and this in spite of the fact that it contains 
many up-to-date manufacturing establishments. 

St. Knud's, the most important church in the town, 
is a red brick Gothic structure, with low, broad- 
spreading wings and a copper-roofed, blunt-pointed 
single spire, which as regards shape reminds me 
somewhat of Roskilde. Inside are the usual paint- 
ings, memorial tablets, and tombs ; and below in the 
shadowy crypt, which possesses arches suggestive of 
those in the crypt beneath Lund Cathedral, are more 
tombs. Some of these tombs date back to the six- 
teenth century, and several have crude, interesting 
inscriptions. On the wall of the vestibule, for in- 
stance, I noticed a tablet dated 1670, bearing some 
verses beginning: 

"Her under denne Steen 
Sig hviler deris Been." 

232 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

which is, being translated, 

*'Here under these stones 
There rest the bones," 

and then followed an account of the earthly tribu- 
lations of Rasmus Andersen. Rasmus Andersen 
lived in dark, weary days when fratricidal wars tore 
Denmark and Sweden. 

In a quiet square, where the Odense children love 
to play, is a bronze figure of Hans Christian Ander- 
sen. It is a good statue; the limp, ungainly figure is 
faithfully reproduced. Upon the face is the sweet 
expression peculiar to the child-hearted man who 
never became sufficiently grown up to lose the chil- 
dren's point of view. 

Odense is, in fact, primarily important because of 
its being the birthplace of Andersen; and that is why 
I made a pilgrimage to it. The house in which he 
was born has been restored, in consequence of a 
movement which started in 1905, during the cele- 
bration of the hundredth anniversary of the poet's 
birth. The building now belongs to the city; its 
official title is "Hans Andersen's House.'* The 
whole house, however, was not occupied by the little 
"ugly duckling" Hans and his parents. The family 
was exceedingly poor, both parents appear to have 
been shiftless, and the father, though talented, was 
erratic. Only one room, the one containing the old- 
fashioned alcove in the wall for the bed, constituted 
the home of the Andersens. But the faliry-tale 
writer left enough mementoes of various kinds to fill 
the several rooms with charming reminders of him, 
and to impress upon one how broadly he ranged and 
how many great souls he met and knew. 

Roskilde and Odense 233 

The building is of the low-roofed, box-shaped 
type, such as my three aunts live in in Svaneke, Born- 
holm; and it stands squarely against the sidewalk 
where two streets cross. When I knocked at the 
door yesterday afternoon, the museum was closed 
for the day, as the curator informed me; but when 
I told her that I had stopped off at Odense espe- 
cially to see Hans Andersen's House, and must leave 
on the morrow before the opening hour, she re- 
marked that in that case it would be a great pity 
for me to be disappointed; and she proceeded to take 
down the shutters. 

Along the walls of the first room which I entered 
were several show cases containing many souvenirs 
of Andersen's life, each accompanied by explana- 
tions in Danish, English, French, and German. 
Among the reminders of his early years I noticed 
with interest his school records, which showed him 
to have been a very ordinary student, for "slet" 
(bad), and '^maadelig" (mediocre) appeared fre- 
quently upon them. In the early Odense days, Hans 
Christian was an "ugly duckling," indeed. Repre- 
sentative of the poet's maturity was a little leather 
bag found upon his breast after death. It contained 
a letter from his sweetheart, Riborg Voigt, whose 
portrait I noticed upon the wall above the case. 
Thus was published to the world the unconsummated 
romance of the romancer. Andersen's will, which 
spoke of his declining years, reminded me that the 
well-plumed swan remembered to the last the days 
when he was an "ugly duckling"; for in the first 
clause of the document was a bequest of a legacy to 
the charity school of Odense, at which, as a blun- 
dering, misunderstood small boy, he received his low 

234 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 


Gifts from friends, high and low, were very much 
in evidence. A tiny mirror framed in deer's horn 
was sent to Andersen in a teasing mood by the 
''Swedish nightingale," Jenny Lind, in order that 
he might see "how pretty he was." One of Ander- 
sen's many peculiarities was his firm conviction, 
which he maintained in the face of his gawky home- 
liness, that he was of distinguished appearance. 
Above a book-case filled with many editions of his 
works, was a wreath of "everlasting" flowers, made 
for him by the Countess Holstein-Holsteinberg. 
And beside the funny old eighteenth-century stove 
was the gift of the Countess Danneskjold-Samsoe, a 
fire screen decorated with a queer conglomeration 
of pictures cut from illustrated papers, which ap- 
pears to have been the fashionable screen of the 
time, for Andersen himself made one of the same 
style. On the sofa was another present from a 
lady of high degree — 3, cushion embroidered with a 
large, handsome, prosperous-appearing swan, evi- 
dently the swan which had evolved from the "ugly 
duckling." The traveling bag in one of the rooms 
is believed to have been the one used by King Chris- 
tian IX during a journey in southern Europe, and 
afterwards given to the poet. But the most pleas- 
ing token of all was offered by little American school 
children. Laboring under the impression that the 
writer of their beloved fairy tales was living in pov- 
erty, they started a collection with the intention of 
sending him money; but when they learned that 
prosperity had come with fame, they sent him in- 
stead two large volumes entitled "Picturesque Amer- 




Roskilde and Odense 235 

In the last room which I explored was the furni- 
ture which Andersen had used in his rooms in Co- 
penhagen. The rocker was later used by Alexander 
Kielland, the Norwegian who has written such 
charming short stories ; and the penholder lying upon 
the poet's old desk was for a time the property of 
Edward Grieg, the Norwegian composer. Near the 
table were Andersen's trunk and hat case, and upon 
it were his tall silk hat and his fat, clumsy umbrella, 
as if he had just returned from a jaunt about Eu- 
rope. It seemed as if the quaint old man himself 
must appear, equipped with a new wonder story all 
ready for the telling. 

The great number and variety of photographs of 
himself in evidence about the rooms were, in them- 
selves, ample proof that the dear old chap was ex- 
ceedingly vain. He had a childlike fondness for 
dress and decoration, and also for being photo- 
graphed. Under one of the photographs he had 
written in Danish some words which must be trans- 
lated, "Life itself is the best wonder story"; but the 
Danish for wonder story is "aventyr," which comes 
from the same root as our work "adventure," and 
consequently means much more of interest than the 
translation would lead one to suppose. And I 
heartily agree with the verdict; I would not miss 
being alive for anything! 

Perhaps the most valuable treasure in the museum 
is the collection of the original lead-pencil drawings 
made by the Danish illustrator, Wilhelm Petersen, 
for Andersen's fairy tales. Many of these pictures 
were old friends of mine, friends which I had not 
seen for many long years — soft, delicate drawings 
of round-faced children in quaint dress; tall, grace- 

236 Cousin Hunting in Scandinavia 

ful lovers and their ladles ; and old people with strong 
and gentle faces. It was a rare pleasure to renew 
their acquaintance in such an intimate way. And, 
for old times' sake, before leaving Odense I bought 
a volume of Andersen's wonder stories, illustrated 
by Petersen, taking care that "The Ugly DuckUng" 
was included in the collection. 

It is again morning. Since five o'clock when I left 
Odense, I have journeyed westward over Fiinen, 
have been ferried across the Little Belt which sep- 
arates Fiinen from the peninsula of Jutland, and 
have started upon my southward way toward Ant- 
werp and home. Now we are about to cross the 
southern boundary of Denmark and to enter the 
lost province of Schleswig. Therefore, it must be 
good-by to Denmark and to the whole pleasant 
Scandinavian land. It is a fond good-by, and were 
not love for my own dear Western country hurrying 
me on, it would be a most regretful one. No kind 
friends stand at the border to wave farewell, with 
"Hils hjemme" and "Komme igen"; but the Jutish 
landscape which smiles upon my right' hand and my 
left does that. And I shall not forget the invitation 
and shall remember to deliver the greeting. 


Aal, 189-190. 

Aalesund, 182. 

Abel, Niels Henrik, 191. 

Absalon, Archbishop, 19-20, 

Akershuus fortress, 201. 

Albert, Kinff, 108. 

Alexandra, Queen, of Eng- 
land, 35. 

Allinge, 66. 

Amalienborgtorv, 45-46. 

Andersen, Hans Christian, 
his story of the "Princess 
and the Pea," 16-17; quot- 
ed, 157-158, 219, 220- 
221 ; his House, 232-236. 

Animals, Society of Swedish 
Women for the Protec- 
tion of, 138. 

Anker, Paul, 57. 

Art, Scandinavian, 38-41, 
43-44, 59-60, 116-117, 

Axel, Archbishop. See Ab- 
salon, Archbishop. 

Bayeux Tapestry, copy of, 

Beds, Danish, 16, 63-64. 
Bergen, 183-188. 
Bernadotte, Marshal. See 

Carl XIV, Johan. 
Birger Jarl, 104, 107, 109, 


Birgitta, Saint, 1 21-122. 
Bissen, Herman, 40. 
Bjornson, Bjornstjerne, 162, 

171, 200. 
Bornholmers, characteristics 

of, 78-80. 
Bornholm's Museum, 58-60. 
Brahe, Tycho, 29-30. 
"Bredablik," 112. 
Bredgade, 43-44- 
Bremer, Fredrika, loi, 127. 
Bronze Age in Denmark, 25- 

Bull, Ole, 187-188. 

Calmar, Union of, 36, 108, 

Canute, King, 214. 
Carl Johans Gade, 190-192, 

"Carolina Rediviva," 125. 

Caroline Mathilde, 222-223. 

Carstensen, George, 211. 

Cattegat, 202. 

Cederstrom, Gustav, 108, 

Charles X, 116; invades 
Denmark over the Great 
Belt, 13, no; besieges 
Copenhagen, 13-14. 

Charles XH, 89, no. 

Charles XHI, 89. 

Charles XIV, John, no, 




Christian I, 32. 

Christian II, Swedish re- 
volt against, 36; massacre 
of Swedes by, 109 ; domin- 
ion over Sweden, 141. 

Christian IV, 29; builds 
Rosenborg Castle, 3 1 ; and 
Thirty Years' War, 33, 
213, 229. 

Christian VII, 223. 

Christian IX, 32, 215-216, 

Christiania, 190-202. 

Christiania, University of, 

Christians©, 67. 

Christina, Queen, of Swe- 
den, 116, 125. 

Christopher III, 145. 

Copenhagen, 13-14, 16-54, 

Copenhagen, University of, 

Dalgas, Enrico, 216. 

"Danish Kings' Chronologi- 
cal Collection." See Ro- 
senborg Castle. 

Dutch, aid given to Denmark 
by, 14; settlement of 
Gothenborg by, 92. 

Education, Scandinavian : 
Danish school-buildings, 
48-49; Danish educational 
system, 205-211; public 
and private schools in 
Sweden, 1 51-152; the 
work-cottages of Norrbot- 
ten, 135-136; education 

of the Lapps, 136. See 

also Universities. 
Eleonore Christine, 67-68. 
Elsinore. See Helsingor. 
Ender, Axel, 168, 170. 
Engelbrektsson, Engelbrekt, 


English language, Scandi- 
navian knowledge of, 18- 
19, 61-62, 206, 207-209. 

Eric XIII, 108, 109, 145, 

Eric, Saint, 1 20-121. 

Evald, Johannes, 34. 

Falun, 147-150. 

Famine, in Sweden, 135, 

Farms, Danish, 62-63, 72- 

73; Swedish, 91-92, 97; 

Norwegian, 174-176. 
Faroes, 80-81, 106, 193. 
Finland, Christianization of, 

121; Swedish loss of to 

Russia, 147. 
Finn, legend concerning the 

giant, 87-89. 
Finse, 189. 

Finsen, Niels, 193, 216. 
Folkungar Kings, 107. 
Food, Scandinavian, 48, 65- 

66, 89-90, 93-95, 153-154) 

Fredensborg Castle, 218-219. 

Frederick II, 29, 213, 219. 

Frederick III, 13. 

Frederick IV, 229-230. 

Frederick VII, 230. 

Frederick VIII, 33. 

Frederika Bremer Associa- 
tion, lOI. 



Frederiksborg Castle, 213- 

Frue Kirke, vor, 41-42. 
Fiinen, 12, 236. 

"Gaard." See Farms. 

Gamla Uppsala, 128-132. 

Gardens outside of Copen- 
hagen, 49-53. 

Gefle, 132-134. 

Geijer, Eric Gustav, 124. 

Gokstad ship, 194-196. 

Gorm, King, 214. 

Gota Lejon Fort, 92. 

Goteborg. See Gothenburg. 

Gotha Canal, 93, 98. 

Gothenburg, 91-96. 

Great Belt, 12-13. 

Greenland, 106. 

Grieg, Edvard, 212, 235. 

**Grufvan," 149-150. 

Grundtvig, Bishop, 210. 

Gudsaaen, 162. 

Gustav III, 105. 

Gustav V, 100. 

Gustav Adolf, 92, no, 116, 

Gustav Vasa, 36, 109, 119, 
124, 146, 156. 

Haakon IV, Haakonson, 
184, 186. 

Haakon VII, 37, 164, 216. 

Haakon's Hall, 184-186. 

Hamlet, 91. 

Hammershuus Castle, and 
the Swedes, 59; descrip- 
tion of ruins, 66-68. 

"Hans Andersen's House," 

Harold Bluetooth, 227-228. 

Hasle, 57. 

Helligdommen Klippen, 68- 

Helsingborg, 89-91, 224. 
Helsingor, 91, 219, 224. 
Hillerod, 213. 
Holger Danske, 219-220, 

221, 225. 

Ibsen, Henrik, statue of, 

191 ; tomb of, 200. 
Iceland, 106, 130. 

Jacobsen, Carl, 39, 213-214, 

Jerichau, Jens Adolf, 40-41. 

Jerichau-Baumann, Eliza- 
beth, 40. 

"Kakkelovn." See Stoves, 

Karnan, 89-91, 224. 
Katherine, Saint, 122. 
Key, Ellen, 101-103, 117, 

Kielland, Alexander, 235. 
Kilafors, 136-139. 
Kitchen middens, Danish, 

Kofoed, Jens Pedersen, 57, 

Kongens Nytorv, 43. 
Korsor, 11, 14. 
Krogh, Christian, 194. 
Kronan, 92. 
Kronborg Castle, 91, 219- 


Laaland, 12. 

Lagerlof, Selma, loi, 117, 
127-128, 148-149, 159. 



Lamb, Charles, 72, 181. 

Langeland, 11. 

Langelinie, 46. 

Lapps, 135-136. 

Larsson, Carl, 116, 148. 

Lawrence, Saint, and Lund 
Cathedral, 88-89. 

''Liberty Stones" of Born- 
holm, 57. 

Liljefors, Bruno, 116. 

Lind, Jenny, 212, 234. 

LInne, Carl, 123. 

Longfellow, Henry Wads- 
worth, translation of, 34; 
influence of Tegner upon, 

Lund, 83-89. 
Lund Cathedral, 86-89. 
Lund, University of, 85- 


Malmo, 82-83. 
Man, Isle of, 130. 
Manners, Scandinavian, 179- 

Manual arts of Scandinavian 

peasants, efforts made to 

preserve, 118, 163, 193. 
Marble Church, 44-45. 
Marienlyst, 224-225. 
Margaret, Queen, 36, 107- 

108, 228-229. 
Mas-Olle, Helmer, 125. 
Maud, Queen, 164. 
Meraker Dal, 162. 
Molde, 167-L71. 
Molde Fiord, 167-168. 
Munch, Edvard, 194. 
Museum of the North, 

Stockholm, no, 118. 

Naes, 171, 172. 

National Museum, Danish, 

20-29; Swedish, 115. 
Nexo, 69-70. 
Nilsson, Christine, 212. 
Nobel, Alfred, 128. 
Nobel Prize Fund. See 

Nobel, Alfred. 
Norrbotten, Work-cottages 

of, 135-136. 
Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, 39- 


Nyerup, Rasmus, 20-21. 

Odense, 231-236. 
Oehlenschlager, Adam, 216- 

Olaf V, 107. 
Oldenburg House, 32. 
Oscar n, 117. 
Oseberg ship, 197-200. 
Osterlars Church, 75. 
Ostermarie Church, 74. 

Peace movement in Scandi- 
navia, 100. 

Peter the Great, 30, 34. 

Petersen, Christian, 83. 

Petersen, Wilhelm, 235-236. 

Petri, Olavus, 114. 

Porcelain, Royal Copen- 
hagen, 44, 58. 

Printzenskjold, Johan, 57. 

"Prinzens Palais." See Na- 
tional Museum, Danish. 

Railroads, Scandinavian, 14- 
15, 69-70, 160, 225-226. 

Rattvik, 1 51-158. 

Riddarholms Church, 109- 



Romsdal Fiord, 1 71-172. 
Romsdal Horn, 171. 
Ronne, 55-60. 
Rosenborg Castle, 31-37. 
Roskilde, 15, 227-231. 
Roskilde Cathedral, 15, 227- 


Roskilde treaty, terms of, 13, 
57, 83 ; Bornholm's re- 
volt against, 57. 

Round Tower, the. See 
"Runde Taarn." 

"Runde Taarn," 29-31. 

San Francisco Bay, kitchen 
midden on shores of, 23. 

Saxo Grammaticus, 216. 

Scandinavian Alps, 161. 

Seeland, 11, 15. 

Shakespeare, 12, 91, 221. 

Siegfried legend, runestone 
illustrating, 11 5- 116. 

Siljan, Lake, 151, 153. 

"Silver Bible," 126-127. 

Sinding, Stephen, 163, 191, 

"Skansen," 110-113. 

*'Skyds," journey by, 172- 

Slottskogen, 93. 

Snorre Sturlason, 216. 

Soderhamn, 140-141. 

Soholt, 176-177. 

Stavanger, 189. 

Stigsdotter, Barbro, 156-157. 

Stockholm, 103-120. 

Stockholm "blood bath," 

Stone Age, New, in Scandi- 
navia, 21-22, 115. 

Stone Age, Old, in Scandi- 
navia, 22-24. 

Stor Fiord, 177. 

Stork Fountain, 204. 

Storkyrkan, 114-115. 

Storlien, 160-161. 

Stoves, Danish, 17. 

Strindberg, August, 159-160. 

Svaneke, 70-71. 

Svend, King, 228. 

Swedenborg, Emanuel, 122- 

Tegner, Ezias, 83-85, 217. 

Tegner, Rudolf, 41. 

Temperance movement in 
Scandinavia, 104-106. 

Thirty Years' War, Chris- 
tian IV and, 33 ; Gustav 
Adolf and, no, 119. 

Thomsen, Christian Jiirgen- 
sen, 21. 

Thor, 27. 

Thorwaldsen, Bertel, 38-39. 

Thorwaldsen's Museum, 38- 

Thrones, ancient Danish, 


Thyra, Queen, 214. 

Tivoli, 211-212. 

Tobacco, use of in Scandi- 
navia, 106-107. 

Tobiasen, Lars Hansen, 59- 

Trondhjem, 162-165. 

Trondhjem Cathedral, 162- 

Trondhjem Fiord, 162, 166. 

Tuberculosis, exhibit of 
Scandinavian Society for 
Fighting, 192-193. 



Ulfeldt, Corfitz, 67-68. 
Ulfilas' Bible. See "Silver 

Universities, 85-86, 124-127, 

192, 204-205. 
Uppsala, 120-128. 
Uppsala Cathedral, 120- 

Uppsala, University of, 124- 


Vesternaes, 172. 
Viking, 196-197. 
Vikings, 27. 

Waldemar I (the Great), 


Waldemar IV, 107. 

Wends, struggle of Arch- 
bishop Absalon with, 19. 

Wieselgren, Peter, 105. 

Woman suffrage in Scandi- 
navia, 1 00-101, 142-143, 


Worsaae, Jens Jacob As- 
mussen, 21, 23. 

Zorn, Anders, ij6. 



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